Bango Plc / NHN Corporation
Cavendish Corporate Finance (“Cavendish”), the UK’s leading sell-side specialist M&A firm and part of finnCap Group, has advised Bango plc (“Bango”) on strategic investments from South Korean online technology conglomerate NHN Corporation (“NHN”).
The transactions see NHN make a majority investment in Bango Deep, the holding company for the Audiens Customer Data Platform business, and make a separate strategic minority investment directly into Bango plc via a subscription of new shares.
Audiens, which was acquired by mobile commerce company Bango in 2018, offers customers a simple-to-use yet technologically sophisticated Customer Data Platform that enables brands of all sizes to plan, execute and analyse their online marketing activities.
The strategic investments allow Audiens to leverage NHN’s in-depth data science and technology know-how to enrich its product suite on a global basis, whilst also facilitating the expansion of NHN’s channel to global customers beyond South Korea.
The transactions followed a focused process run by Cavendish to review strategic options for the Audiens business and showcases finnCap Group’s end-to-end solution given close collaboration between the Cavendish M&A and finnCap public markets teams.
The Cavendish team was led by Jon Edirmanasinghe, Partner and Chris Malcolm, Director with the finnCap team being led by Marc Milmo, Director.
Jon Edirmanasinghe, Partner commented:
“The investments into both Bango Deep and Bango plc represent a transformational expansion of the partnership with NHN which will provide wider collaboration opportunities between the companies.
The transactions demonstrate our tech sector expertise, our ability to complete complex cross-border transactions and our ability to complete transactions in difficult macro-economic environments.”
Ray Anderson, Executive Chairman at Bango plc commented:
“NHN has a fantastic growth story and a history of first-mover innovation which, coupled with the existing data platform know-how at Audiens, will enable us to create a powerful force for technology leadership in online commerce.”
JS Lee, Director at NHN Corp commented:
“Together we will create a global leader in data technology. The NHN strategy is to partner with global leaders to take our research and technology to the world. We are privileged to enter into this strategic partnership with Bango, which has built a unique position at the heart of global mobile commerce for the 21st century.”
App developers, stores and payment providers cross the threshold into the Bango ecosystem to converge, grow and thrive. By bringing businesses together and powering e-commerce with unique data-driven insights, Bango delivers new business opportunities and new dimensions of growth for customers around the world. Being inside the Bango circle means global merchants including Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) can work together with payment partners from Africa to the Americas, accelerating the performance of everyone on the inside.
NHN headquartered in Seoul, South Korea, operates a wide range of businesses which include financial technology, data and advertising technology, entertainment content and cloud services.
Founded in 1999, it rapidly became a market leader mobile gaming and entertainment. NHN then launched domestic and international payment solutions for both online and retail ecommerce, which has expanded across Asia and into North America. Based on a vast and growing user behaviour database, and expertise in user analysis and data modelling, NHN has expanded into data technology and mobile marketing products.
“The finnCap Cavendish team were exceptional from start to finish on our deal, helping us to prepare meticulously for the process, identifying a group of highly strategic buyers and negotiating a fantastic deal for our Shareholders. We would thoroughly recommend them to any owners considering an exit.”
“Thank you to John and your fantastic team at FinnCap Cavendish for your unwavering support, dedication, work ethic and belief in Xexec’s mission. John, Mike and Sam were instrumental in bringing the deal to a successful completion and provided invaluable guidance throughout the process.
We look forward to our new partnership with the Castik and Abry teams who are the ideal partners as we continue to expand our business and pursue the next phase of our strategy.”
‘The finnCapCavendish team were great to work with, they took time to listen, properly understand our objectives and tailored the process to get a fantastic result for us. They really understood the value drivers in the ICT sector and had access to all the key buyers for our business, they were able to efficiently manage the sale process maintaining the great relationship we’d built we Adept as our preferred buyer.’
“Thank you to Jon, Steph and Chirag for their tireless efforts in recent months. Jon offered invaluable leadership and strategic advice, while Chirag and Steph provided diligent and supportive guidance throughout. They also behaved throughout as one would expect friends and confidants to act, which is very helpful in a confidential situation. We were delighted with the result and very, very pleased to have had the three of them as our team.”
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“The Cavendish team of Jon, Chris, Chirag and Soben steered the process from start to finish and were instrumental in bringing this transaction to a successful conclusion with the right partner in the form of Naviga. The sale of Miles 33 to Naviga marked a successful exit for the financial investors and provides management with a larger platform to grow the business.”
“We are delighted to have secured this transformational funding. The open market does not serve everyone and the funding enables us to provide a choice to many more sellers. We would also like to thank Jon, Ben, Steph for their efforts – they provided invaluable advice and hands-on support throughout the process, providing us with a trusted advisor that saw the transaction through to completion.”
In Thomson Reuters, we found a strategic buyer that shares our commitment to the rule of law. We have a proven track record of enabling the courts’ digital transformation of the UK. We are optimistic that with Thomson Reuters global footprint we will be able to help courts around the world to continue to operate effectively and efficiently into the future.
We’d also like to place on record a huge thank you to Jon, Sam and the Cavendish team. From identifying Pelican Capital through to providing advice and support throughout the due diligence process, Cavendish deserve a great deal of credit for delivering the fundraise in an exceptionally challenging environment.
“On behalf of the shareholders, we’d like to thank Cavendish for their advice, tireless work ethic and professionalism throughout the process. Jon, Mike and the team were instrumental in achieving a fantastic result for both the shareholders and the company, as we embark on our exciting next phase of growth with a new investor. We knew we had chosen the right partner in Cavendish and you did not let us down.”
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