TPG Real Estate completes acquisition of Studio Babelsberg AG

TPG Capital

January 3, 2022 – TPG Real Estate Partners (“TREP”), the dedicated real estate equity investment platform of alternative asset firm TPG, today announced it has completed the acquisition of Studio Babelsberg AG (“Studio Babelsberg”). Dr. Carl L. Woebcken and Mr. Christoph Fisser, CEO and COO of Studio Babelsberg, respectively, maintain a minority stake in the business.

On 16 September 2021, TREP announced that it agreed to acquire a stake in Studio Babelsberg via acquisition of the company’s main shareholder, Filmbetriebe Berlin Brandenburg GmbH (FBB), which was controlled by Mr. Woebcken and Mr. Fisser. As part of the agreement, FBB launched a public tender offer to acquire a majority of the shares in Studio Babelsberg for a cash offer price of EUR 4.10 per Studio Babelsberg Share. The offer was subject to a minimum acceptance threshold, which was fulfilled on 29 October 2021 following a successful acceptance period. All closing conditions of the transaction have now been fulfilled.

With the closing of the transaction, Studio Babelsberg has become part of TREP’s global studio platform, Cinespace Studios (“Cinespace”). Cinespace is the second largest sound stage operator in North America. With Studio Babelsberg, Cinespace will now operate 90 stages, furthering its strategy of building a best-in-class studio platform for premier content makers across the globe. Studio Babelsberg will continue to operate as an independent brand but benefit from the resources and networks provided by the global platform. Studio Babelsberg has a long history of hosting best-in-class content production, including recent German local language series such as Dark, Babylon Berlin, and 1899, as well as world renowned feature films such as Inglorious Basterds, V for Vendetta, Bridge of Spies, and recently The Matrix Resurrections.

“Across the globe, Studio Babelsberg is known for its quality and as a symbol of Berlin’s and Brandenburg’s creative culture,” said Michael Abel, Partner at TREP. “With Studio Babelsberg, we saw an opportunity to invest behind a leading studio facility that is well positioned to benefit from secular growth trends in media and content consumption. We support the company’s strategy and direction and look forward to growing the business.”

“We are excited to announce a successful completion of the transaction, and to welcome TREP as Studio Babelsberg’s new partner,” said Dr. Woebcken and Mr. Fisser. “The team values our rich history and brings significant insight and business building capabilities to Studio Babelsberg’s next chapter. We look forward to working together to further solidify our position as Europe’s premier studio.”  

“Studio Babelsberg has a strong tradition of film making that has served some of the most iconic films ever made,” said Eoin Egan, COO of Cinespace. “As appetite for high-quality content continues to increase, we look forward to working with the Studio Babelsberg and TREP teams to grow Berlin into a global hub for content production.”

About TPG Real Estate Partners 

TPG Real Estate Partners (“TREP”) is the dedicated real estate equity investment platform of global alternative asset firm TPG. Today, TREP has $5.5 billion of assets under management. Since its inception in 2009, TREP has built a differentiated investment portfolio comprised primarily of real estate-rich platforms and portfolios located in the United States and Europe. TPG was founded in 1992 and now has approximately $109 billion of assets under management with investment and operational teams in 12 offices around the world. For more information, visit www.tpg.com.

Media Contacts

TPG Real Estate Partners 

Deutschland:
Thomas Katzensteiner, Peter Steiner, Tobias Eberle
tpg-cb@charlesbarker.de

Europe: 
Alex Jones, Michael Russell, Daniel Oliver
tpg@greenbrookpr.com

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Mentha Capital invests in international visual content solution provider Bright River

Mentha Capital
21 December 2021
Mentha has entered into a partnership with Bright River, a rapidly growing international visual content solutions provider for many of the world’s leading ecommerce platforms and retailers. Bright River is a Dutch company with a worldwide footprint with offices in Haarlem, New York, Dhaka (Bangladesh) and Chennai (India). Goal of the partnership with Mentha is to accelerate growth and expand activities of the company to new regions and customers worldwide.

In the past year global ecommerce sales jumped to 26.7 trillion and the industry is ramping up for more. This also means there’s a growing need from ecommerce and retail organizations for high quality visual content that provide the best possible shopping experience. With its own technology, 750 employees in offices across three continents and a strong track record, Bright River is perfectly positioned to benefit from this.

Mentha chose to take a stake in Bright River because of the company’s proprietary technology and advanced tech-enabled services model that deliver tangible value for leading ecommerce platforms and retailers like Harrods, Coolblue and Yoox. In a rapidly growing and fragmented market Bright River has the ideal platform to pursue accelerated autonomous and acquisitive growth, both in existing and new industries. As an active shareholder in internationally expanding tech-enabled service companies like previously Destiny and now InSites Consulting and Rapid Circle, Mentha Capital can deploy its extensive knowledge and experience in both operational and strategic areas. Bright River can also count on Mentha’s in-depth expertise in ‘buy-and-build’, which allows the organization to further expand through acquisitions in addition to organic growth.

David Jonkers, CEO of Bright River: “’Having Mentha Capital as a key shareholder is a game changing opportunity for Bright River. They understand and share our vision of the ever growing importance of visual product content in e-commerce, and bring a wealth of experience in the execution of ambitious growth goals. We are thrilled to get started.”

Increase efficiency in visual content production

The right visual product content creates rich, engaging online shopping experiences that help convert customers from browsing to purchasing. Bright River helps clients to drastically increase efficiency in visual content production processes, and decrease the ‘time-to-web’ for products to be published online. Computer Vision-based AI, among other technologies, powers their industry-leading workflow and editing automation, giving their image- and video editing, as well as 3D modeling and CGI rendering services, a decisive edge over their competition.

Edo Pfennings, partner at Mentha: “We are very enthusiastic about this partnership. With its own technology Bright River has built a strong position in a rapidly growing and dynamic market. The management team has big ambitions to scale and accelerate its growth through acquisitions and move into new industries, something that Mentha is well equipped to help with.”

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Storykit raises $10M to fuel global growth

Bonnier Ventures

Storykit, the leading video creator in the Nordics, announced today it has raised $10 million USD in funding, in a growth financing round led by Expedition Growth Capital.

Storykit has almost doubled in 2021, leveraging artificial intelligence to enable companies to create more video than ever before. With the new funding they will accelerate innovation and expansion at an even higher pace.

“We are thrilled to partner with Expedition Growth Capital to realize the enormous potential of Storykit. Video is the number one format for social channels in 2022 and beyond, and with Storykit any marketer or communicator can leverage the power of video. We’ve experienced colossal growth over the past few years, which reflects the increasing demand for organizations to create video with high quality and flexibility, in an ultra-high tempo. We’re really looking forward to fulfilling the strong market demand for our video creator on a global scale,” said Peder Bonnier, CEO and co-founder of Storykit.

Serving predominantly large and medium sized enterprises, Storykit has quickly grown to become the leading video creator in the Nordics, and has recently expanded into several European markets. Key customers include Skandia, Dun & Bradstreet, the City of Stockholm and Lufthansa Systems.

“We have nearly doubled our revenues in the last twelve months, fully on our own cash flow, and are happy to have found yet another partner who is interested in building long lasting, economically viable businesses, without having to compromise on growth. This investment will enable us to further invest in our already market leading product, and expand to more markets and customer segments”, says Peder Bonnier.

Expedition Growth Capital is a $200+ million London-based growth equity fund, focused solely on investing in fast growing and capital efficient B2B software companies in Europe and Israel. This is their first investment in the Nordics.

“Since our first conversations with Storykit in 2020, we have been energised by their commitment to building a company for the long term. This is our first investment in Sweden, and we are delighted to be partnering with such a high quality group of founders and investors”, said Oliver Thomas, Managing Partner of Expedition Growth Capital.

David Olsson, who led the investment and will join Storykit’s board of directors, adds:

“Storykit is addressing an increasingly universal corporate and departmental need – to rapidly produce video content that is highly professional, brand aligned, and cost effective. We see enormous potential for the company in the years ahead and look forward to being a supportive partner for the Storykit team.”

 

Storykit was founded in 2018 by Fredrik Strömberg and Peder Bonnier. By building the complete video creator they aim to enable everyone who can write text to create video. With over 500 customers, and tens of thousands of users all over the world, they are well on their way. For more information, see www.storykit.io

Expedition Growth Capital is a software-specialist growth equity investor, currently investing a $200 million fund. The firm provides growth capital, shareholder liquidity and supportive minority partnership to rapidly growing, capital efficient software companies across Europe and Israel. For more information see www.expedition.capital.

Storykit has almost doubled in 2021, leveraging artificial intelligence to enable companies to create more video than ever before. With the new funding they will accelerate innovation and expansion at an even higher pace.

“We are thrilled to partner with Expedition Growth Capital to realize the enormous potential of Storykit. Video is the number one format for social channels in 2022 and beyond, and with Storykit any marketer or communicator can leverage the power of video. We’ve experienced colossal growth over the past few years, which reflects the increasing demand for organizations to create video with high quality and flexibility, in an ultra-high tempo. We’re really looking forward to fulfilling the strong market demand for our video creator on a global scale,” said Peder Bonnier, CEO and co-founder of Storykit.

Serving predominantly large and medium sized enterprises, Storykit has quickly grown to become the leading video creator in the Nordics, and has recently expanded into several European markets. Key customers include Skandia, Dun & Bradstreet, the City of Stockholm and Lufthansa Systems.

“We have nearly doubled our revenues in the last twelve months, fully on our own cash flow, and are happy to have found yet another partner who is interested in building long lasting, economically viable businesses, without having to compromise on growth. This investment will enable us to further invest in our already market leading product, and expand to more markets and customer segments”, says Peder Bonnier.

Expedition Growth Capital is a $200+ million London-based growth equity fund, focused solely on investing in fast growing and capital efficient B2B software companies in Europe and Israel. This is their first investment in the Nordics.

“Since our first conversations with Storykit in 2020, we have been energised by their commitment to building a company for the long term. This is our first investment in Sweden, and we are delighted to be partnering with such a high quality group of founders and investors”, said Oliver Thomas, Managing Partner of Expedition Growth Capital.

David Olsson, who led the investment and will join Storykit’s board of directors, adds:

“Storykit is addressing an increasingly universal corporate and departmental need – to rapidly produce video content that is highly professional, brand aligned, and cost effective. We see enormous potential for the company in the years ahead and look forward to being a supportive partner for the Storykit team.”

 

Storykit was founded in 2018 by Fredrik Strömberg and Peder Bonnier. By building the complete video creator they aim to enable everyone who can write text to create video. With over 500 customers, and tens of thousands of users all over the world, they are well on their way. For more information, see www.storykit.io

Expedition Growth Capital is a software-specialist growth equity investor, currently investing a $200 million fund. The firm provides growth capital, shareholder liquidity and supportive minority partnership to rapidly growing, capital efficient software companies across Europe and Israel. For more information see www.expedition.capital.

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Espresso Capital provides Boclips with £7 million acquisition facility

espresso capital

London — November 3, 2021 — Espresso Capital announced today that it has provided Boclips, the world’s leading educational video platform, with a £7 million credit facility. The company will use the financing to help fund its strategic acquisition of Boston-based Listenwise Innovation, Inc.

“We’re delighted to be partnering with Espresso,” said Boclips CEO and Founder David Bainbridge. “The funding enables us to execute on our transatlantic M&A strategy and position our business for further expansion in the US market.”

The acquisition of Listenwise, the US market leader in curriculum-geared podcasts for grades 2 to 12, creates a unique offering of video and audio content for global education providers, and positions the combined business for accelerated growth in the US and worldwide.

“Boclips has a demonstrated track record of success, and has grown to become the trusted provider of video content for curriculums,” said Espresso Managing Director Will Hutchins. “With its acquisition of Listenwise, Boclips will be able to offer an even more compelling solution to the education sector, driving value for its customers and unlocking significant cross-selling opportunities.”

Boclips manages the largest educational video resource in the world, providing access to more than 2 million rights-cleared clips from over 350 trusted sources — ranging from news programming from The Wall Street Journal through Ted Talks to specialist tutorial videos from The Smithsonian. Its AI-driven content management system enables users to easily locate the right video for every stage of the school or university curriculum. Customers include courseware developers, EdTech solutions providers, as well as Ministries of Education across the Middle East and Asia.

“Espresso has been great to work with,” noted Bainbridge. “Their flexibility and experience played a critical part in our being able to successfully execute this important M&A transaction.”

About Boclips

Boclips is on a mission to educate, enlighten, and inspire learners of all ages with video. Since the company’s foundation in 2014, the Boclips video platform has offered education providers a single procurement point to find, license, and incorporate video aligned to their courseware. The platform features over 2 million educationally relevant videos including animations, short-form docs, historical footage, and breaking news from 350 of the world’s most trusted content producers, including TED Talks, PBS, The Smithsonian, and AP, as well as teacher-favorites like Crash Course, Minute Earth, and The School of Life. The platform uses machine learning to curate to academic standards and is free from advertising, inappropriate content and data security concerns. For more information, visit https://boclips.com.

About Espresso Capital

Espresso empowers companies with innovative venture debt solutions. Since 2009, we’ve helped more than 300 technology companies and their investors accelerate growth, extend runway, and increase strategic flexibility with non-dilutive capital. Learn more at espressocapital.com.

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Ratos company HL Display acquires Display Italia

Ratos

2021-09-02

HL Display is acquiring Display Italia with a revenue of EUR 10M. The acquisition will strengthen HL Display’s customer base and position as a leading supplier for in-store merchandising and communication solutions to grocery retailers in Europe. The enterprise value is approximately EUR 8M corresponding to an EV/EBITA multiple of 5x.

Display Italia, based in Reggio Emilia, in northern Italy, has an annual sale of EUR 10M and employs 38 people. Founded in 1989, Display Italia has built a strong position in Italian retail, catering both to grocery retail, pharmacies and branded suppliers.

“With the acquisitions of Display Italia, HL Display has now completed its third bolt-on acquisition in 2021, in line with its communicated strategy. The acquisitions strengthen HL Display’s overall business, are strategically important and contribute financially through cost and revenue synergies. I am very impressed with how HL Display has been able to execute on its inorganic growth ambition throughout the year.” says Joakim Twetman, Head of Business Area Industry. “For Ratos, add-on acquisitions is one of the key initiatives to meet our financial targets.”

“Since the start of our partnership in 1989, Display Italia has built a very strong market presence in Italy, creating a better shopping experiences together with retailers and brands. Their knowledge of the Italian grocery landscape and passion for retail has made them an essential partner for HL Display and I am looking forward to further our presence in Italy,” says Björn Borgman, CEO of HL Display.

The acquisition was completed on 1 September 2021.

For further information, please contact:
Josefine Uppling, VP Head of Communication & Sustainability, Ratos
+46 76 114 54 21
josefine.uppling@ratos.com

Joakim Twetman, Head of Business Area Industry, Ratos
+46 70 339 16 66
joakim.twetman@ratos.com

Björn Borgman, CEO, HL Display
+46 72 264 17 90
bjorn.borgman@hl-display.com

About HL:
HL is a global leader in in-store merchandising and communication solutions, helping customers to create a better shopping experience around the world. Founded in 1954, HL today is present in more than 70 countries and solutions can be found in 295,000 stores, helping customers to grow sales, inspire shoppers, drive automation and reduce waste. The HL Display Group has its headquarter in Stockholm, Sweden and sales companies covering 26 markets as well as distributor partners covering the remaining markets globally. The company has 1,000 employees and net sales of SEK 1,610M.

About Ratos:
Ratos is a business group consisting of 12 companies divided into three business areas: Construction & Services, Consumer and Industry. In total 2020, the companies have approximately SEK 34 billion in sales. Our business concept is to develop companies headquartered in the Nordics that are or can become market leaders. We enable independent companies to excel by being part of something larger. People, leadership, culture and values are key focus areas for Ratos. Everything we do is based on Ratos’s core values: Simplicity, Speed in Execution and It’s All About People.

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Innovid, a Global Leader In Connected TV Ad Delivery and Measurement, to Become Publicly Listed at an Implied $1.3 Billion Valuation via a Merger with ION Acquisition Corp. 2 Ltd.

DTCP

Total raised to be approximately $403 million including proceeds from ION Acquisition Corp 2 and a PIPE from Fidelity Management and Research Company LLC, Baron Capital Group, funds associated with ION, and others

  • Innovid is going public via a merger with ION Acquisition Corp. 2 Ltd. (NYSE: IACB), a publicly traded special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, with $253M in trust.
  • The transaction implies a pro forma valuation of approximately $1.3 billion for Innovid.
  • Innovid has also secured approximately $150 million of PIPE financing anchored by top-tier institutional investors including Fidelity Management and Research Company LLC, Baron Capital Group and others including funds affiliated with ION and Phoenix Insurance.
  • The company has spent the past decade focused on developing critical technology infrastructure for the creation, delivery, and measurement of TV ads across connected TV (CTV), mobile TV and desktop TV.
  • Existing investors including Goldman Sachs, Sequoia Capital, Newspring, Genesis Partners and Vintage will remain shareholders under the proposed structure.
  • Innovid plans to extend its technology edge through expanding integrations with leading CTV publishers across international markets, the launch of additional personalized CTV ad formats, and the introduction of progressive identity solutions with the goal of advancing the underlying technology infrastructure supporting the TV advertising ecosystem’s shift from linear to digital.
  • Innovid’s founders have been together since the company’s inception, over a decade ago, and continue to serve on the management team.
  • The transaction is expected to close in Q4 of 2021.

NEW YORK, NY (June 24, 2021) – Innovid, the world’s largest independent ad delivery and measurement platform for connected TV, today announced it has entered into a definitive merger agreement with ION Acquisition Corp. 2 Ltd. (NYSE: IACB), a special purpose acquisition company. The combined company will operate under the Innovid name and will trade on a US national exchange. The transaction is expected to close in Q4 of 2021.

Founded in 2008, Innovid is a leading independent software platform that provides critical technology infrastructure for the creation, delivery, and measurement of TV ads across CTV, mobile TV and desktop TV. As the only ad server purpose-built for TV, Innovid developed the first and still the most advanced CTV SDK on the market. Innovid’s SDK powers personalized and interactive experiences in CTV through direct integrations across over 50 apps, providing the infrastructure layer behind the advertising shown by some of the biggest names in streaming including Roku (ROKU) and Hulu. The company has spent the past decade focused on building deep relationships across the CTV and OTT industry. Through this focus Innovid has achieved a growing list of industry firsts and key milestones including: the first and only ACR integration with Roku, the first and only buy-side ad server w/MRC certification for CTV measurement, the first and only platform delivering ads into NBCU’s Peacock, as well as serving the first and only interactive Super Bowl ad. The company has also actively worked to connect the different parts of the TV ad-tech ecosystem by launching a consortium with leading independent programmatic platforms The Trade Desk (TTD), Magnite (MGNI), and others to power advanced creative buying at scale across CTV. As the $200 billion dollar TV industry continues to shift to CTV, the company is positioned to take a leadership role in a significant and high growth market.

Additionally, over the past few years, Innovid has expanded its offering to encompass independent global ad serving, data-driven personalization, and new forms of measurement designed to connect all channels in a clean, comparable, and privacy-compliant manner. This offering gives marketers the option to consolidate CTV advertising with desktop TV, mobile TV, display, social and more, through Innovid’s proprietary omni-channel solutions. Furthermore, the open platform boasts a slew of workflows and integrations to seamlessly integrate ad delivery and optimization with preferred external providers. Of note, Innovid does not transact media and therefore has zero media buying conflicts, enabling it to work as a truly independent company across the entire advertising ecosystem.

Innovid at scale:

  • Innovid serves a global client base of brands, agencies, and publishers through offices across the Americas, Europe, and Asia Pacific, delivering ads across a growing global footprint.
  • Innovid currently serves over 40% of the top 200 U.S. TV advertisers, providing technology infrastructure to enable the creation, delivery, and measurement of TV ads across CTV, mobile TV and desktop TV.
  • The Innovid ad serving platform grew impression delivery across CTV devices by more than 70% year-to-date 2021 over the same period in 2020.
  • Named a leader in the Forrester Wave: Creative Ad Tech, Q4 2020 report, the technology powers the generation of personalized ad permutations as well as ad delivery across a footprint spanning over 75 million connected homes.

“Innovid is entering an exciting new chapter of growth as a public company, a major milestone that corresponds with rising adoption and demands for streaming television.” said Zvika Netter, Co-Founder and CEO at Innovid. “The rapid shift of viewership from linear TV to streaming has driven marketers to make CTV a strategic investment focus. Our technology was purpose-built for TV which has allowed us to win in the marketplace and contributed to our rapid growth to date.”

Mr. Netter continued, “As a public company, we expect that we will be able to build on our leading market position, accelerate the growth of our business, and remain the independent platform trusted by the world’s largest TV advertisers. We are proud to have built an independent and neutral software platform to allow advertisers to create, deliver and measure digital TV ads and aim to continue to provide the industry a market leading and transparent offering independent of the large technology walled-garden players who dominate many other parts of the digital world.”

Gilad Shany, CEO of ION said, “We believe Innovid has built an exceptional platform for digital TV advertisers to assist them as they transition $200 billion of TV advertising budgets to the world of digital TV. We are excited to partner in bringing Innovid to the public markets to provide the appropriate capital structure and shareholder base to enable Innovid to lead this market as an independent company. We were looking to merge with an exceptional company with roots in the Israeli hi-tech ecosystem and Innovid’s incredible achievements speak for themselves. The combination of long-term partnerships built by the company throughout the CTV and OTT industry, their strong relationships with the largest TV advertisers in the world, unique ad serving technology and focus on a usage-based software business model, allows Innovid to provide significant value to the digital TV advertising ecosystem while also achieving attractive unit economics as the company grows. With many years of growth ahead as users continue the shift from linear to digital TV, we look forward to joining Zvika and the team for an exciting journey and incredible business opportunities.”

Transaction Overview

Innovid has entered into a definitive agreement to merge with ION Acquisition Corp. 2 Ltd., for an implied pro forma aggregate equity valuation of approximately $1.3 billion. The transaction is supported by approximately $150 million of PIPE financing anchored by top-tier institutional investors including Fidelity Management and Research Company LLC, Baron Capital Group, Vintage and others including funds affiliated with ION and Phoenix Insurance.

The proposed transaction is expected to be completed in Q4 2021, subject to approval by the shareholders of ION, and satisfaction of other customary closing conditions.

Advisors

Evercore LLC acted as sole financial and capital markets advisor to Innovid and also acted as a placement agent on the PIPE. Latham & Watkins LLP and FWMK Law Offices acted as legal counsel to Innovid.

Morgan Stanley acted as sole financial advisor to ION and also acted as lead placement agent to ION on the PIPE. White & Case LLP and Goldfarb Seligman & Co. acted as legal counsel to ION. Debevoise & Plimpton LLP acted as legal counsel to the placement agents.

Kost Forer, Gabbay & Kasierer, a member of Ernst & Young Global Limited, is acting as independent auditor.

Forward-Looking Statements Legend

This document contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws with respect to the proposed transaction between Innovid Inc. (“Innovid”) and Ion Acquisition Corp 2 Ltd. (“Ion”), including statements regarding the benefits of the transaction, the anticipated timing of the transaction, the services offered by Innovid and the markets in which it operates, and Innovid’ projected future results. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words “believe,” “project,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “intend,” “strategy,” “future,” “opportunity,” “plan,” “may,” “should,” “will,” “would,” “will be,” “will continue,” “will likely result,” and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this document, including but not limited to: Innovid’s ability to maintain and expand relationships with advertisers; the decrease and/or changes in CTV audience viewership behavior; the failure to make the right investment decisions or the failure to innovate and develop new solutions that are adopted by advertisers and/or partners; Innovid’s estimates of market opportunity, forecasts of market growth and projections of future financial performance; Innovid’s sales and marketing efforts requiring significant investments and long sales cycles; failure to manage growth effectively; the business combination not be satisfied on a timely basis or at all, and other risks and uncertainties indicated from time to time in the proxy statement/prospectus, including those under “Risk Factors” therein, and in Ion’s other filings with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Innovid and Ion assume no obligation and do not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Neither Innovid nor Ion gives any assurance that either Innovid or Ion will achieve its expectations.

Additional Information and Where to Find It

This document relates to a proposed transaction between Innovid and Ion. This document does not constitute an offer to sell or exchange, or the solicitation of an offer to buy or exchange, any securities, nor shall there be any sale of securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, sale or exchange would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such jurisdiction. Ion intends to file a registration statement on Form S-4 that will include a proxy statement of Ion and a prospectus of Ion. The proxy statement/prospectus will be sent to all Ion and Innovid stockholders. Ion also will file other documents regarding the proposed transaction with the SEC. Before making any voting decision, investors and security holders of Ion and Innovid are urged to read the registration statement, the proxy statement/prospectus and all other relevant documents filed or that will be filed with the SEC in connection with the proposed transaction as they become available because they will contain important information about the proposed transaction.

Investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of the proxy statement/prospectus and all other relevant documents filed or that will be filed with the SEC by Ion through the website maintained by the SEC at www.sec.gov. In addition, the documents filed by Ion may be obtained, without charge, at the SEC’s website located at www.sec.gov or by directing a request to Ion.

Participants in Solicitation

Ion and Innovid and their respective directors and officers may be deemed to be participants in the solicitation of proxies from Ion’s stockholders in connection with the proposed transaction. Information about Ion’s directors and executive officers and their ownership of Ion’s securities is set forth in Ion’s filings with the SEC. To the extent that holdings of Ion’s securities have changed since the amounts printed in Ion’s proxy statement, such changes have been or will be reflected on Statements of Change in Ownership on Form 4 filed with the SEC. Additional information regarding the interests of those persons and other persons who may be deemed participants in the proposed transaction may be obtained by reading the proxy statement/ prospectus regarding the proposed transaction when it becomes available. You may obtain free copies of these documents as described in the preceding paragraph.

About ION Acquisition Corporation

The Company is a blank check company incorporated for the purpose of effecting a merger, share exchange, asset acquisition, share purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses. While the Company may pursue a business combination target in any business or industry, the Company intends to focus on the rapidly growing universe of Israeli companies and entrepreneurs that apply technology and innovation to our everyday lives. The Company is sponsored by ION Holdings 2, LP, an affiliate of ION Asset Management Ltd

About Innovid

Innovid is the only independent omni-channel advertising and analytics platform built for television. We use data to enable the personalization, delivery, and measurement of ads across the widest breadth of channels in the market including TV, video, display, social, audio, and DOOH. Our platform seamlessly connects all media, delivering superior advertising experiences across the audience journey. Innovid serves a global client base of brands, agencies, and publishers through fifteen offices across the Americas, Europe, and Asia Pacific. For more information visit www.innovid.com.

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Verizon Media to be Acquired by Apollo Funds

Apollo Global

Transaction Expected to Accelerate Growth of the Internet and Digital Media Leader

Verizon to Maintain Minority Stake in the New Company to be Known as Yahoo

NEW YORK, May 03, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and Apollo Global Management, Inc. (NYSE: APO) (together with its consolidated subsidiaries, “Apollo”) today announced that funds managed by affiliates of Apollo (the “Apollo Funds”) entered into an agreement to acquire Verizon Media for $5 billion. Verizon will retain a 10% stake in the company, which will be known as Yahoo at close of the transaction and continue to be led by CEO Guru Gowrappan.

One of the world’s premier global technology and media companies, Verizon Media is comprised of iconic brands such as Yahoo and AOL, as well as leading ad tech and media platform businesses. The corporate carveout will allow Verizon Media to aggressively pursue growth areas and stands to benefit its employees, advertisers, publishing partners and nearly 900 million monthly active users worldwide.

“We are excited to be joining forces with Apollo,” said Guru Gowrappan, CEO, Verizon Media. “The past two quarters of double-digit growth have demonstrated our ability to transform our media ecosystem. With Apollo’s sector expertise and strategic insight, Yahoo will be well positioned to capitalize on market opportunities, media and transaction experience and continue to grow our full stack digital advertising platform. This transition will help to accelerate our growth for the long- term success of the company.”

“We are thrilled to help unlock the tremendous potential of Yahoo and its unparalleled collection of brands,” said Reed Rayman, Private Equity Partner at Apollo. “We have enormous respect and admiration for the great work and progress that the entire organization has made over the last several years, and we look forward to working with Guru, his talented team, and our partners at Verizon to accelerate Yahoo’s growth in its next chapter.”

“We are big believers in the growth prospects of Yahoo and the macro tailwinds driving growth in digital media, advertising technology and consumer internet platforms,” said David Sambur, Senior Partner and Co-Head of Private Equity at Apollo. “Apollo has a long track record of investing in technology and media companies and we look forward to drawing on that experience to help Yahoo continue to thrive.”

“Verizon Media has done an incredible job turning the business around over the past two and a half years and the growth potential is enormous,” said Hans Vestberg, CEO, Verizon. “The next iteration requires full investment and the right resources. During the strategic review process, Apollo delivered the strongest vision and strategy for the next phase of Verizon Media. I have full confidence that Yahoo will take off in its new home.”

Verizon Media reported strong, diversified year-over-year revenue growth the past two quarters, driven by innovative ad offerings, consumer ecommerce, subscriptions, betting and strategic partnerships. Yahoo, one of the best recognized digital media brands in the world and the fourth most visited internet property globally, continues to evolve as a key destination for finance and news among Gen Z. This was most recently marked by Yahoo News becoming the fastest growing news organization on TikTok.

Under the terms of the agreement, Verizon will receive $4.25 billion in cash, preferred interests of $750 million and retain a 10% stake in Verizon Media. The transaction includes the assets of Verizon Media, including its brands and businesses. The transaction is subject to satisfaction of certain closing conditions and expected to close in the second half of 2021.

Goldman Sachs served as lead financial advisor to Verizon in the transaction. Evercore also served as financial advisor to Verizon. Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP are serving as legal counsel to Verizon.

LionTree served as lead financial advisor to and will invest alongside the Apollo Funds, bringing its global strategic relationships to Yahoo as the company continues to accelerate growth and pursue strategic investments in key verticals and product areas.

RBC Capital Markets also served as financial advisor to the Apollo Funds in connection with the transaction, alongside Barclays, BMO Capital Markets Corp., Deutsche Bank and Mizuho Securities USA LLC; all are also providing financing for the transaction. Mizuho Securities USA LLC also served as lead structuring advisor to the Apollo Funds. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is serving as legal counsel to the Apollo Funds.

About Verizon
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) was formed on June 30, 2000 and is one of the world’s leading providers of technology, communications, information and entertainment products and services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $128.3 billion in 2020. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers’ demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, security and control.

About Apollo

Apollo is a leading global investment manager with offices in New York, Los Angeles, San Diego, Houston, Bethesda, London, Frankfurt, Madrid, Luxembourg, Mumbai, Delhi, Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo, among others. Apollo had assets under management of approximately $455 billion as of December 31, 2020 in credit, private equity and real assets funds. For more information about Apollo, please visit www.apollo.com.

About Verizon Media

Verizon Media, a division of Verizon Communications, Inc., houses a trusted media ecosystem of premium brands like Yahoo, TechCrunch and Engadget to help people stay informed and entertained, communicate and transact, while creating new ways for advertisers and media partners to connect. From XR experiences to advertising and content technology, Verizon Media is an incubator of innovation and is revolutionizing the next generation of content creation in a 5G world.

VERIZON’S ONLINE MEDIA CENTER: News releases, stories, media contacts and other resources are available at verizon.com/news. News releases are also available through an RSS feed. To subscribe, visit www.verizon.com/about/rss-feeds/.

Media contact:
Allison Butler
Corporate Communications
Verizon Media
(202) 669- 9887
allison.butler@verizonmedia.com

Joanna Rose
Global Head of Corporate Communications
Apollo Global Management, Inc.
(212) 822-0491
Communications@apollo.com

Kim Ancin
+ 1 908-801-0500
kimberly.ancin@verizon.com

Investor Contact
Peter Mintzberg
Head of Investor Relations
Apollo Global Management, Inc.
(212) 822-0528
APOInvestorRelations@apollo.com

 

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Source: Verizon Sourcing LLC

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Altor-backed Iyuno Media Group enters agreement to acquire SDI Media

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Altor

Creating the Media and Entertainment Industry’s Largest, Most Comprehensive Global Localization Services Company

LOS ANGELES – January 22, 2021 – Iyuno Media Group, a market leader in localization services to the media and entertainment industry, today announced it has entered into an agreement with Imagica Group Inc. to acquire 100% of SDI Media. This transaction, which is subject to review and approval from relevant authorities, brings together two companies with the shared mission of supporting, innovating and leading the art of global storytelling. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“SDI Media is a great fit for Iyuno,” said Shaun Gregory, CEO, Iyuno Media Group. “We are well-aligned in our quality standards, complementary strategies and compatible service offerings. As a combined company, we will continue to deliver best-in-class services and technology innovations to our industry. We are certain that new and existing clients will benefit from the collective experience and capabilities of the combined company.”

“By merging IYUNO with SDI we create a clear global leader, optimally positioned to serve the accelerating and increasingly complex demand from the leading entertainment players”, said Klas Johansson, Partner at Altor and a Board member of Iyuno Media Group. “We also build scale and capacity within technology and data, to ensure that IYUNO will continue to lead the way in terms of developing next generation services to the benefit of all our clients”

“We are excited to join Iyuno and become part of the industry’s leading localization services company,” said Mark Howorth, Chief Executive Officer, SDI Media. “We believe that the explosive global content distribution needs of the industry can only be served by a complimentary service provider that can scale with them in support of their needs.”

Iyuno was supported in this transaction by Altor, Shamrock Capital and SoftBank Ventures Asia, its primary financial partners. The three investors are pleased to see this sustained momentum in the expansion and diversification of the Iyuno Media Group portfolio. The completion of this transaction remains subject to review and approval from relevant authorities.

For more information, please contact:
Tor Krusell, Head of Communications at Altor +46 705 43 87 47

About Altor
Since inception, the family of Altor funds has raised some EUR 8.3 billion in total commitments. The funds have invested in excess of EUR 4.2 billion in more than 60 companies. The investments have been made in medium sized predominantly Nordic companies with the aim to create value through growth initiatives and operational improvements. Among current and past investments are Dustin, Byggmax, Piab, Aalborg Industries, Trioplast, SATS and RevolutionRace. For further information please visit www.altor.com.

About IYUNO MEDIA GROUP
Iyuno Media Group (www.iyunomg.com) is a market leader in the localization industry with leading-edge technology providing dubbing, subtitling, and access services in any language. A technology trailblazer with grounded core values in an ever-changing industry, Iyuno Media Group uses its sophisticated in-house technology for all of its product and service offerings. Today, the company operates 35 local facilities globally, spanning a network of fully owned local sites across 30 countries in Europe, Asia and The Americas – offering clients end-to-end solutions for broadcasters, all major film studios, OTT and streaming platforms.

About SDI MEDIA
SDI Media (www.sdimedia.com) is one of the world’s leading media localization providers, offering dubbing, subtitling, and media services to content owners, broadcasters, and multi-platform distributors. SDI Media offers a complete end-to-end localization solution for theatrical releases and episodic series, using the most comprehensive suite of customizable localization software applications in the industry. With the world’s largest owned and operated network of 33 facilities in Asia, EMEA and the Americas, incorporating over 150 recording rooms and 85 mixing rooms globally.

Author: Katarina Karlsson
Date: 2021.01.22
Categories: News

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Altor-backed Iyuno Media Group enters agreement to acquire SDI Media

Altor

reating the Media and Entertainment Industry’s Largest, Most Comprehensive Global Localization Services Company

LOS ANGELES – January 22, 2021 – Iyuno Media Group, a market leader in localization services to the media and entertainment industry, today announced it has entered into an agreement with Imagica Group Inc. to acquire 100% of SDI Media. This transaction, which is subject to review and approval from relevant authorities, brings together two companies with the shared mission of supporting, innovating and leading the art of global storytelling. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“SDI Media is a great fit for Iyuno,” said Shaun Gregory, CEO, Iyuno Media Group. “We are well-aligned in our quality standards, complementary strategies and compatible service offerings. As a combined company, we will continue to deliver best-in-class services and technology innovations to our industry. We are certain that new and existing clients will benefit from the collective experience and capabilities of the combined company.”

“By merging IYUNO with SDI we create a clear global leader, optimally positioned to serve the accelerating and increasingly complex demand from the leading entertainment players”, said Klas Johansson, Partner at Altor and a Board member of Iyuno Media Group. “We also build scale and capacity within technology and data, to ensure that IYUNO will continue to lead the way in terms of developing next generation services to the benefit of all our clients”

“We are excited to join Iyuno and become part of the industry’s leading localization services company,” said Mark Howorth, Chief Executive Officer, SDI Media. “We believe that the explosive global content distribution needs of the industry can only be served by a complimentary service provider that can scale with them in support of their needs.”

Iyuno was supported in this transaction by Altor, Shamrock Capital and SoftBank Ventures Asia, its primary financial partners. The three investors are pleased to see this sustained momentum in the expansion and diversification of the Iyuno Media Group portfolio. The completion of this transaction remains subject to review and approval from relevant authorities.

For more information, please contact:
Tor Krusell, Head of Communications at Altor +46 705 43 87 47

About Altor
Since inception, the family of Altor funds has raised some EUR 8.3 billion in total commitments. The funds have invested in excess of EUR 4.2 billion in more than 60 companies. The investments have been made in medium sized predominantly Nordic companies with the aim to create value through growth initiatives and operational improvements. Among current and past investments are Dustin, Byggmax, Piab, Aalborg Industries, Trioplast, SATS and RevolutionRace. For further information please visit www.altor.com.

About IYUNO MEDIA GROUP
Iyuno Media Group (www.iyunomg.com) is a market leader in the localization industry with leading-edge technology providing dubbing, subtitling, and access services in any language. A technology trailblazer with grounded core values in an ever-changing industry, Iyuno Media Group uses its sophisticated in-house technology for all of its product and service offerings. Today, the company operates 35 local facilities globally, spanning a network of fully owned local sites across 30 countries in Europe, Asia and The Americas – offering clients end-to-end solutions for broadcasters, all major film studios, OTT and streaming platforms.

About SDI MEDIA
SDI Media (www.sdimedia.com) is one of the world’s leading media localization providers, offering dubbing, subtitling, and media services to content owners, broadcasters, and multi-platform distributors. SDI Media offers a complete end-to-end localization solution for theatrical releases and episodic series, using the most comprehensive suite of customizable localization software applications in the industry. With the world’s largest owned and operated network of 33 facilities in Asia, EMEA and the Americas, incorporating over 150 recording rooms and 85 mixing rooms globally.

Author: Katarina Karlsson
Date: 2021.01.22
Categories: News

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UNICEPTA acquires social intelligence specialist Ubermetrics

Paragon

UNICEPTA, the global innovation leader for Media & Data Intelligence expands its competencies in social media. In course of this technology acquisition, both companies will combine their AI-based technology platforms and expand their ability to automatically analyze large amounts of data for communication and marketing management.

Ubermetrics analyzes over 460 million sources from social media as well as blogs and forums in real time and offers the quantified results and insights via its technology platform. The platform is a highly scalable SaaS solution currently used by over 200 companies and focuses on monitoring and text mining.
Patrick Bunk, founder and CEO of Ubermetrics, says: “We are very motivated to partner with UNICEPTA. Two smart companies are now working with a joint technological vision: we want to make AI easily and quickly accessible for more and more communication and marketing areas.”
“Ubermetrics possesses one of the best technology platforms based on semantic AI. We are very pleased that Patrick Bunk, founder and CEO of Ubermetrics, along with his team, has decided to join UNICEPTA.”, says Georg Stahl, Managing Partner of UNICEPTA.
Both brands – UNICEPTA and Ubermetrics – will remain and combine their technology platforms. UNICEPTA will continue to act as an innovation leader and insights advisor for international corporations and large mid-sized companies. Ubermetrics will continue to develop automated intelligence solutions under the leadership of Patrick Bunk. Ubermetrics will launch new market intelligence solutions for risk management (e.g., supply chain risk), as well as text mining services for SaaS and analytics providers.

About Ubermetrics
Ubermetrics is the leading content intelligence platform for marketing and PR professionals. With Ubermetrics, digital communicators find and analyze relevant content and can use the results to track, measure and optimize communication campaigns. In addition, relevant trends, influencers and communication channels as well as successful content can be determined. Per minute, the Ubermetrics platform processes over 50,000 articles and content from more than 460 million sources. Ubermetrics is based in Berlin and successfully works with clients in more than 15 countries worldwide.

About UNICEPTA
UNICEPTA is the leading provider of visionary AI-powered Media & Data Intelligence solutions with an added human factor of analytics and insights that drive faster, more effective business decisions. UNICEPTA offers real-time end-to-end Global Media Monitoring across all media channels (social media, online, broadcast, print), supported by Analytics & Insights to help the subscribed customer to spot corporate issues and opportunities immediately. UNICEPTA is headquartered in Cologne and has subsidiaries in Germany, the USA, China, Poland, Switzerland and the UK.

About Paragon
Paragon is one of the leading independent private equity firms in Europe with more than €1.2 billion of equity under management. Paragon works closely with portfolio companies to achieve sustainable growth and operational excellence. The investment portfolio covers various industries and currently comprises 14 companies. Since 2018, Paragon is majority shareholder of UNICEPTA. Paragon was founded in 2004 and is based in Munich, Germany.

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