NEW YORK — April 19, 2018 — Berkery Noyes, an independent mid-market investment bank, today released its Q1 2018 mergers and acquisitions trend report for the Online and Mobile Industry. The report analyzes M&A activity in the Online and Mobile Industry during Q1 2018 and compares it with the past four quarters.
According to Berkery Noyes’ research, transaction volume declined 12 percent in over the past three months. Total deal value rose 56 percent, from $19.5 billion to $30.5 billion. Aggregate volume throughout the past five quarters reached its peak in Q1 2017, whereas value reached its zenith in Q3 2017. Strategic acquirers completed nine of the top ten highest value Online & Mobile deals during the past quarter.
The SaaS & Cloud segment experienced a 17 percent volume decrease in Q1 2018. This followed a six percent gain in Q4 2017. High profile segment transactions in the finance vertical year-to-date included Temenos Group’s announced acquisition of Fidessa, which provides software and services for investment management systems, analytics, and market data that serves both the buy-side and sell-side, for $1.9 billion; Intercontinental Exchange’s acquisition of Virtu Financial’s fixed income trading venue BondPoint for $400 million; Warburg Pincus’ announced acquisition of a majority stake in Fiserv’s lending solutions business for $395 million; and Experian’s announced acquisition of ClearScore, a U.K. based credit data startup, for $385 million.
The number of transactions in the mobile application sector fell 12 percent on a quarterly basis, with a total of 81 acquisitions in Q1 2018. Fashion retailer Nordstrom was a notable related acquirer with the acquisitions of BevyUp, which offers a mobile clienteling app that is used by sales associates to provide customers with a personalized, omnichannel experience; and MessageYes, a platform for e-commerce through mobile messaging. As for the mobile transportation sector, first quarter deals included BMW Group’s acquisition of Parkmobile, a provider of parking payment solutions in the U.S.; Verdane Capital’s majority recapitalization of EasyPark, which also allows users to find, remotely manage, and pay for parking; and Singapore based ride-hailing platform Grab’s acquisition of Uber’s Southeast Asia operations.
E-Content volume improved 33 percent in Q1 2018, which marked a return to its Q3 2017 level. This made it the sector with the largest rise in M&A activity over the past three months. Apple was a notable segment acquirer with the announced acquisition of Texture, a digital magazine platform that is sometimes referred to as the “Netflix of Magazines.”
E-Marketing & Search volume decreased 19 percent in Q1 2018. This occurred after a 14 percent increase in Q4 2017. Of note, E-Marketing & Search surpassed E-Commerce during the quarter and reclaimed its position as the industry’s second most active sector behind SaaS & Cloud.
Notable E-Marketing & Search deals year-to-date included Cars.com’s announced acquisition of DealerInspire and Launch Digital Marketing, which includes digital automotive marketing services such as paid, organic, social and creative services, for $165 million; Pandora’s announced acquisition of AdsWizz, a digital audio ad technology company, for $145 million; GoDaddy’s announced acquisition of Main Street Hub, a social media marketing platform, for $125 million (as well as a potential $50 million earnout); and Accenture Interactive’s announced acquisition of Meredith Xcelerated Marketing, an integrated marketing digital agency owned by Meredith Corporation.
“From a general standpoint, acquirers are showing interest in solutions that can facilitate better ways of mining customer data,” said Vineet Asthana, Managing Director of Berkery Noyes. “Many are also looking for more efficient means of leveraging content, search engine optimization capabilities, and turnkey campaign management programs.”
E-Commerce deal activity, after rising 22 percent in Q4 2017, declined 27 percent in Q1 2018. Notable segment transactions year-to-date included GTCR and Sycamore Partners’ announced acquisition of CommerceHub, a technology company that helps retailers manage e-commerce inventory, for $989 million; and Visa’s announced acquisition of Fraedom, which provides payments and transaction management solutions for financial institutions and their corporate customers, for $200 million.
A copy of the ONLINE AND MOBILE M&A REPORT FOR FIRST QUARTER 2018 is available at the Berkery Noyes website.