Infront Sports & Media Acquires Controlling 51% Equity Interest In Omnigon
Switzerland-based marketing company Infront Sports & Media has struck a deal to acquire a controlling 51% equity interest in digital media consultancy Omnigon, expanding on a strategic partnership announced in October. The deal calls for Omnigon to function in part as a North American unit of Infront, whose clients in Europe have included FIFA and the IIHF, among others. Financial terms were not disclosed, but Infront intends to keep the Omnigon brand name and employees, operate the company as a stand-alone unit and keep Igor Ulis in place as Omnigon CEO. “We saw immediately the benefits of our strategic partnership, and an equity participation made a great deal of sense,” Ulis said. “Together, this will allow us to accelerate our efforts to expand globally.” Omnigon and Infront have collaborated on several projects already, including providing digital services to the Serie A and mobile app development for the German Football Association’s DFB Cup. “The idea is to leverage our services together as much as possible,” said Alessandro Albanese, Infront Associate Dir of Mergers, Acquisitions & Business Integration (Eric Fisher, Staff Writer).
GETTING DIVERSIFICATION: BLOOMBERG NEWS' Jill Mao noted China-based Dalian Wanda Group, which purchased Infront last February, is planning five "substantial" acquisitions this year as the company "braces for a drop in sales." Dalian Wanda Chair Wang Jianlin last week said that the pursuit of targets "will focus on companies in the entertainment and sports industries." Wang is "increasingly looking toward entertainment to spur growth as China’s slowing economy undermines his main property business." The company earlier this month bought a majority stake in the Legendary Entertainment film studio for $3.5B (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 1/17).