Investis acquires ZOG Digital

ZOG 1Digital communications company Investis, a portfolio company of private equity company ECI, has acquired digital marketing agency ZOG Digital. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

ZOG Digital, based in Phoenix, USA and founded in 2011, provides key digital marketing services, including search engine optimisation, content strategy, paid media and social marketing. The business is ranked by Forrester as one of the top 10 US search marketing agencies. Clients include Whirlpool, Fruit of the Loom, Wyndham Vacation Rentals and Del Monte.

Investis, headquartered in London, has more than 500 employees globally. With the ZOG Digital acquisition, the company’s US presence will grow to over 100 employees, split between Phoenix and the company’s US headquarters in New York City.

“Digital is at the heart of everything we do,” said Investis CEO Don Scales. “With this acquisition, we define end-to-end content strategy, drive new visibility and amplify influence and engagement across all channels and platforms. Our roots in the investor relations space give us a unique perspective on creating the next-generation digital communications company. ZOG Digital’s capabilities, in particular, will benefit our corporate clients globally.”

“Don’s track record as a top operator and global executive in the digital industry gives new velocity to the vision, client success and company culture we have built at ZOG,” said Jeff Herzog, ZOG Digital founder/CEO. “Together the companies will help corporate communicators establish new trusted and valuable relationships between brands and audiences. The ability to deliver connected content will open up new markets in the US and throughout Europe.”

Herzog will join Investis as an advisor and resident futurist, helping identify growth opportunities for the company.

Richard Chapman, Partner at ECI and a Board Director at Investis commented, “We are delighted to have backed Don and the team at Investis to make this acquisition. In our experience we have found strategic investments such as this one to be powerful growth drivers.”

Uk, London, & USA, New York & USA, Phoenix, AZ


Briefing Media invests in business publisher Urner Barry

Briefing MediaBriefing Media, the agribusiness media and information company backed by Lyceum Capital, has announced a strategic investment in Urner Barry Publications Inc. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

ub_logoUrner Barry is a business publisher specialising in the reporting of market news and quotations to clients in the poultry, egg, meat, seafood and related segments of the food industry through a variety of print and non-print media. Urner Barry can trace its roots back to 1858 when Benjamin Urner, a New York printer, publishing the Producers’ Price-Current market report—later to be known as the Urner Barry’s Price-Current.

This is the second add-on for Briefing Media since Lyceum invested in the business in 2015. It follows the acquisition of Toulouse-based Global Data Systems in June 2016.

Commenting on the deal Briefing Media’s CEO, Neil Thackray said “Urner Barry has a strong heritage, and has been relied on by generations of agribusiness professionals to provide the information they need to run their businesses. Our strategic partnership will be hugely valuable for both companies and we look forward to cementing our position as the leading global provider of agricultural information.”

UK, London & USA, Toms River, NJ

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RWS Holdings acquires Article One Partners

RWS1RWS Holdings plc, a provider of intellectual property support services and life sciences and commercial language services, has acquired Article One Partners, LLC, an IP information business based in the United States, for $8 million. AOP had revenues of $3.7 million for the year ended 31 December 2016,

 AOP’s online crowdsourcing platform links its clients to a community of over 42,000 researchers, across more than 170 countries, to provide them with access to IP intelligence that informs their litigation, licensing, patent enforcement and IP acquisition strategy decisions. The platform is able to match AOP’s clients’ requirements with researchers in the right technical field and geography.  

Andrew Brode, Chairman of RWS, commented: “The acquisition of AOP is a natural fit to accelerate the development of our growing Patent Information division and will provide clients with a complementary, online resource to aid their intellectual property research needs.

 “We see a number of opportunities for the business to benefit from RWS’s scale and global presence, particularly given our established sales team’s ability to offer clients the fuller range of intellectual property services across multiple geographies, so we are excited about the potential for this additional service going forward.”

Chalfont St Peter, Buckinghamshire, UK & New York, NY, USA

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Campus Management acquires Hobsons’ Admissions software business from DMGT

CampusCampus Management Corp., a provider of cloud solutions and services for higher education institutions, has acquired the Hobsons’ Admissions software business from DMGT. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

The Admissions business consists of the Radius, AppReview, ApplyYourself, Connect, and Retain CRM and application management product lines. It accounted for approximately a quarter of Hobsons’ revenues in the year to date

The approximately 100-person team of CRM and application management staff will move across to Campus Management.

“As we continue to evolve our CampusNexus® engagement platform, fostering communications and relationships throughout the student lifecycle, we look to constantly improve upon what we offer to the market,” said Campus Management CEO Jim Milton. “The CRM and application management products add to our already strong CampusNexus suite to achieve that goal, and the addition of the very talented Hobsons team members reinforces our mission to deliver the higher education platform and services that enable institutions to transform their academic delivery, student success, and operational efficiency, on their terms.”

Boca Raton, FL & UK, London

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WPP invests $5 million in Gimlet Media

wppWPP is investing $5 million for a minority stake in Gimlet Media, Inc., a global podcasting company based in the US.

Gimlet’s advertising and branded-content clients include Alphabet Inc., Ford Motor Company, PepsiCo, Match Group, eBay, Blue Apron, Goldman Sachs and Microsoft Corporation. Gimlet is based in Brooklyn, New York and was founded in 2014. It employs 85 people.

Gimlet’s podcasts are downloaded over 12 million times per month in over 190 countries worldwide. Gimlet’s programming spans a variety of verticals like StartUp (business), Reply All (internet culture), Mogul (music), Homecoming (scripted fiction), Uncivil (history), Science Vs (science), Crimetown (true crime), The Nod (Black culture), among many others. Gimlet also produces branded podcasts on behalf of advertisers. Since its founding, Gimlet has raised US$27 million in funding.

UK, London & USA, New York

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XLMedia PLC acquires for $7M

XLMediaXLMedia, a provider of digital performance marketing, has acquired (“MU30”), a US focused price comparison website for financial services, for $7 million.

MU30 is a personal finance site providing information for young adults wanting to make informed financial decisions, particularly around credit cards, loans, mortgages and savings accounts. The acquisition of MU30 helps XLMedia’s to expand further geographically in North America and to expand its footprint in the financial services sector.  XLMedia’s recently acquired of, a Canadian focused credit card comparison website.

Ory Weihs, Chief Executive Officer of XLMedia, said, “As a leading personal finance review site, MU30 is a known publisher in the US, and with its existing footprint and brand recognition, it represents an excellent opportunity for XLMedia to increase its North American presence and expand within the financial services market.”

UK, Jersey, St. Helier & USA, Yarmouth, MA

WPP invests in VR/AR company Within Unlimited in the US

wppWPP has made a strategic investment in Within Unlimited, Inc., a US-based virtual reality/augmented reality entertainment and technology company

Within creates and produces virtual reality content and also curates content from third parties, which it distributes through the Within app.

Partners and content collaborators include Apple, The New York Times, NBC Universal, Vice, 21st Century Fox, and Alphabet Inc. Within employs over 35 people and is based in Los Angeles with an office in San Francisco. It was founded in 2014. Within is led by film maker and music video director Chris Milk and technologist Aaron Koblin.

UK, London & USA, Los Angeles, CA

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