News Corp, one of the four largest media companies in the world, is acquiring adtech platform Unruly, both companies announced this week. The expected purchase price for the acquisition consists of a cash payment of approximately US$90 million and up to approximately US$86 million in the future if certain milestones are met, making the deal worth up to $176 million.
Unruly is a London-based ad tech company that enables advertisers to track and increase engagement of their video content. The cloud-based dashboard solution, Unruly Analytics, houses 15 billion customizable data points and is used by brands to provide real-time video intelligence and benchmark their performance against competitor sets. Other services the company provides are Unruly Active. Well-known social video campaigns are T-Mobile Advert “Lifes For Sharing” and Dove Beauty Sketches.
One of the three VC’s backing Unruly is the Amsterdam-based Endeit Capital. For Endeit this is the 16th exit. Successful previous trade sales were Metrixlab (to Macromill for $154 million), Albumprinter (to Vistaprint for approximately $90 million), Unamic/HCN (to Xerox, undisclosed), Hyves (to TMG for over €40 million), Eyeworks (to TimeWarner for $273 million) among others. Amadeus and BGF have been the other two backers of Unruly.
“We have been impressed with Unruly’s founders and their local teams around the world in executing and monetizing the social advertising ecosystem through Unruly’s platform,” says Martijn Hamann, partner at Endeit Capital and board member at Unruly. “I am proud to have been able to back and actively support the internationalization journey of Unruly, especially in Germany with the acquisition of Shareifyoulike, and we wish them a great future as part of News Corp.”
“Endeit really helped in our global expansion, especially in Germany and introduced a number of our clients to us”, the three founders of Unruly – Matt Cooke, Scott Button and Sarah Wood- say in their blogpost about the deal.
“The acquisition will serve as a catalyst for our brands, helping to extend our expertise in the digital and mobile video area said Robert Thomson,” Chief Executive of News Corp in the press announcement about the acquisition. “Unruly complements our traditional editorial and commercial expertise with contemporary insight into how people read, watch, buy and sell in the digital era.”
In the blogpost about the deal the founders of the company say that they will retain the Unruly brand, the Unruly values, and the Unruly passion, operating as a separate business unit. “We’re agile, we’re passionate, we’re disruptive – and that’s not about to change.”
Just over two weeks ago Endeit Capital announced that it had raised its second fund of €107 million. Endeit told StartupJuncture that it expects to invest in 15 – 17 companies around 2 to 10 million euro per company in multiple rounds. The new fund will be used for growth stage investments in the fields of media & marketing, e-commerce, educational technology and mobile.
Photo provided by Unruly