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Fintech, Tech and Crypto Media Sector Exhibits Resilience with Notable Strategic Acquisitions and Funding Rounds in 2023

Fintech, Tech and Crypto Media Sector Shows Resilience with Notable Strategic Acquisitions and Funding Rounds in 2023


January 5, 2024

Over the previous yr, world financial and geopolitical uncertainty posed challenges for media and telecoms mergers and acquisitions (M&A) exercise, however regardless of this, the sector continued to see strategic acquisitions and funding rounds pushed by components similar to digitalization, innovation, consolidation and the pursuit of recent market alternatives, studies by consultancies Deloitte and KPMG spotlight.

Deal exercise within the expertise, media and telecom continued their downtrend in Q2 2023, with deal worth falling 32% from Q1 2023 to Q2 2023 on a 15% decline in deal quantity. Tech transactions suffered a substantial pullback, with deal quantity lowering to 854 from 1,011 in Q1 2023 and deal worth dropping to US$23.9 billion from US$47.4 billion. Telecom deal quantity plunged from 74 to Q1 2023 to 44 in Q2 2023, although mixed deal worth remained regular at US$5.9 billion from US$5.8 billion.

Media stood out in Q2 2023, rising because the subsector of the bunch that defied the chances. Regardless that deal quantity declined barely to 354 in Q2 2023 from 382 in Q1 2023, deal worth greater than tripled to US$8.4 billion in Q2 2023 from US$2.6 billion in Q1 2023.

Strategic transactions accounted for the majority of media offers in Q2 2023, with 281, down 5.7% from the earlier quarter, in comparison with 73 non-public fairness offers, down 13.1%. The image was much more lopsided value-wise with strategic offers reaching a worth of US$7.9 billion, up 491.3%, whereas non-public fairness transactions collectively amounted to only US$400 million, down 64.5%.

Media deal activity by subsector, Source: Nearing the bottom?: M&A trends in technology, media and telecom, KPMG, Q2 2023

Media deal exercise by subsector, Supply: Nearing the underside?: M&A traits in expertise, media and telecom, KPMG, Q2 2023

2023 has up to now recorded a lot of notable M&A offers within the media sector, focusing totally on streaming, digital media, gaming, rising economies, adtech, and social media, amongst different key themes. These offers had been geared toward having access to a broader viewers, connecting with new demographics and markets, and diversifying income streams.

Tech Information and Crypto Media M&A acquisitions Accelerates in Asia

Notable media acquisition offers this yr embrace SPH Media buying Tech in Asia to strengthen its tech and occasions enterprise, Bullish buying CoinDesk to put money into world growth, and TechCrunch buying StrictlyVC to refocus on its roots in enterprise investments.

Main Singaporean media group SPH Media introduced in November its buy of native digital information publication Tech in Asia. The deal goals to help SPH Media’s ambition to show its publication, The Enterprise Instances, right into a regional participant and speed up its purpose of changing into a trusted supply of enterprise and tech information for buyers, dealmakers, entrepreneurs and readers who’ve an curiosity in Southeast Asia.

The acquisition means each extra startup protection and maybe extra importantly choosing up Tech in Asia’s occasions enterprise, which makes a speciality of tech exhibits in Singapore and Jakarta that appeal to hundreds of attendees and prime sponsors.

Tech in Asia is a Singaporean on-line information publication based in 2010 that covers startup and enterprise capital (VC) information throughout Southeast Asia, India and North America. The corporate additionally operates a regional occasions community, an promoting company unit known as Studios, and a regional startup and tech jobs market.

Monetary particulars of the deal weren’t disclosed, however sources instructed DealStreetAsia that the agreed transaction pegged Tech in Asia’s valuation at US$30 million.

Within the US, cryptocurrency alternate Bullish acquired this yr crypto-focused media firm CoinDesk in an all-cash take care of undisclosed monetary phrases, the Wall Road Journal reported in November. Bullish, which is run by New York Inventory Change president Tom Farley, goals to put money into CoinDesk’s world growth and the expansion of the corporate’s media, occasions, and indexing companies.

CoinDesk was beforehand owned by the Digital Forex Group (DCG), which acquired the media firm again in 2016 for US$500,000. Nevertheless, within the aftermath of the collapse of FTX, DCG discovered itself entangled in its personal monetary troubles. The agency’s lending subsidiary Genesis World Capital filed for chapter after rounds of layoffs, and its institutional buying and selling platform TradeBlock and wealth administration unit headquartered in had been pressured to closed store.

CoinDesk, which generated US$50 million in income in 2022, has confronted challenges this yr, shedding 16% of its inner workers in August. The corporate had been exploring choices, together with a partial or full sale, and was earlier this yr within the closing phases of sealing an approximate US$125 million deal involving a syndicate of buyers, the Wall Road Journal reported in July.

Based in 2013, CoinDesk is a number one media, occasions, knowledge, and indices firm specializing in the crypto and blockchain business. CoinDesk’s key companies embrace CoinDesk Media, which delivers information tales on the crypto and blockchain business; CoinDesk Occasions, which gathers the worldwide crypto, blockchain and Net 3.0 communities at annual occasions similar to Consensus, the world’s largest and longest-running crypto competition; and CoinDesk Indices, which affords experience in digital asset indices, knowledge and analysis to teach and empower buyers.

One other noteworthy media M&A deal this yr is the acquisition of media startup StrictlyVC by Yahoo. The deal, unveiled in August, will see StrictlyVC being included into Yahoo-owned TechCrunch, working as a sub-brand throughout the TechCrunch portfolio.

The acquisition showcases Yahoo’s dedication to TechCrunch below its new possession, and alerts a shift by TechCrunch again to its roots masking enterprise investments and startups in Silicon Valley. It’s a part of a broader effort by Yahoo to put money into a number of key pillars, typically via acquisitions, together with information, sports activities, finance, mail and search.

Launched in 2013, StrictlyVC is a well-liked each day e-newsletter specializing in the VC scene in Silicon Valley and past, and which claims 60,000 free e mail subscribers. The corporate additionally runs occasions and a podcast, and earns income from sponsorships.

In addition to these three noteworthy acquisition offers, the media sector additionally recorded a lot of smaller transactions which can be nonetheless price mentioning.

In Austria, journal writer VGN Medien Holding joined in Could Die Brutkasten Gruppe as a strategic investor, changing into the brand new majority shareholder of the Austrian tech information firm. As a part of the transaction, VGN Medien Holding stated it’s going to help the additional development of Die Brutkasten Gruppe and accompany the corporate in its growth into new markets and segments.

Die Brutkasten Gruppe describes itself as a “multimedia platform for startups, the digital economic system and innovation” and has witnessed appreciable development over the previous years. In accordance to Austrian nationwide public broadcaster ORF, Die Brutkasten Gruppe grew its gross sales from EUR 600,000 to EUR 3.2 million between 2018 and 2022, and consists of a staff of 35 individuals unfold throughout Vienna, Munich and Berlin.

In Asia, Singapore-based Foresight Ventures accomplished in November the acquisition of nearly all of the shares of crypto information and knowledge supplier The Block. The acquisition was accomplished at a US$70 million valuation, and the corporate plans to “construct out new thrilling merchandise” and develop into Asia and the Center East, CEO Larry Cermak stated in an X put up on Monday.

Based in 2018, The Block is a media outlet that delivers information, analysis, and knowledge. The corporate makes most of its income from adverts and subscription. It generates round US$20 million in income final yr, instructed Axios final yr.

In July 2022 the market already monitored the acquisition of Grvty Media (proprietor of  Asian tech information web page Vulcanpost) via Singpapore-based Towerhill by Kiat Lim.

However in fact the entire media market was overshadowed in July 2022, by the sensational acquisition of Business Dive by Informa, who purchased the area of interest publication service for an estimated whopping 525m USD.

Media funding rounds and offers

Within the fast-paced media and tech panorama, 2023 has additionally witnessed a number of strategic strikes, with vital funding rounds shaping the business.

Within the Center East, Saudi Arabia’s Occasions Funding Fund (EIF), part of the Nationwide Growth Fund, acquired in July a stake in Tahaluf. Tahaluf is an area large-scale reside occasions firm created via a strategic three way partnership between the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones (SAFCSP) and Informa, the worldwide occasion organizer and digital providers group behind the Finovate occasion collection.

The funding in Tahaluf aligns with EIF’s technique to develop a sustainable infrastructure for the tradition, tourism, leisure and sports activities sectors throughout Saudi Arabia, by constructing a number of world-class venues by 2030.

Tahaluf is the organizer of tech occasions LEAP and Black Hat Center East, in addition to the substitute intelligence (AI) occasion DeepFest in Saudi Arabia. Within the span of simply two years, Tahaluf, along with the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Communications and IT, managed to show LEAP into one of many world’s most-attended tech occasions with attendance reaching 172,000 this yr.

Tahaluf plans to launch additional various unique idea occasions, together with the Saudi Maritime Congress, World Well being Exhibition and Inflavour, for the meals business. Tahaluf may even carry iconic Informa manufacturers to Saudi Arabia together with CityScape, CPHI and Cosmoprof, serving the worldwide actual property, pharmaceutical and wonder industries respectively.

In Singapore, Bitsmedia, the creator of common Muslim life-style utility, Muslim Professional, secured in December a US$20 million Sequence A funding spherical from Asia-focused enterprise capital (VC) agency Gobi Companions, CMIA Capital Companions and Bintang Capital Companions.

Bitsmedia stated it could use the proceeds to advance AI capabilities; enrich content material choices on Bitsmedia’s streaming platform, Qalbox; repeatedly develop instructional options; and enhance the Quran expertise inside Muslim Professional.

Muslim Professional is a highly-rated and complete Muslim life-style app with greater than 150 million downloads globally to this point, and Qalbox is a worldwide subscription video on demand leisure streaming service aimed on the world Muslin group.

Lastly within the US, crypto media outlet Blockworks raised in Could a US$12 million funding spherical led by non-public fairness agency 10T Holdings at a US$135 million post-money valuation. The corporate stated it could use the proceeds to develop its analysis and knowledge analytics providing, Blockworks Analysis.

Already in June 2021 Lloyds Capital invested GBP13 million into Hybrid Media, a UK and Malaysia based mostly media company which owns additionally the the tech information web page Techwireasia,

Learn additionally: Fintech and Finance Companies Snap Up Media Corporations to Achieve Viewers

Fintech and Finance Companies Snap Up Media Corporations to Achieve Viewers


This text first appeared on fintechnews.ch

Featured picture credit score: edited from freepik

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