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Digital media acquisitions increased a quarter in first half of 2015

By Minda Smiley | Reporter

July 6, 2015 | 3 min read

Mergers and acquisitions in the digital media, information and technology space have increased 24 per cent in the first half of 2015 compared the same period last year, according to investment bank Coady Diemar Partners.

The total number of these deals increased to 1,243 in the first half of 2015, up from 1,000 during the same period in 2014.

However, merger and acquisition (M&A) value in this space decreased 23 per cent to $99bn in the first half of this year compared to the year prior. According to the research, this is primarily due to a decrease in the number of deals equal to or greater than $1bn.

Source: Coady Diemar Partners

The three sectors with the greatest number of transactions were agency and marketing, digital content, and information.

The dollar value of M&A in the ad tech and services sector increased by three quarters (74 per cent) to $6.1bn in the first half of 2015, the largest percentage increase of any sector. The dollar value of M&A in the mobile sector decreased by 74 per cent due to the nearly $20bn acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook last year.

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The largest M&A deal announced this year in this space was the acquisition of software company Informatica for $5.3bn by private equity firms Permira and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

The fourth-largest transaction was Verizon’s acquisition of AOL for nearly $4.4bn.

Global ad agency holding companies WPP, Dentsu, and Publicis Groupe were the three most active digital acquirers in the first half of 2015 with Google tied for third.

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