2018 ended with a total of 34 public exits, sales of technology companies founded by Spanish entrepreneurs. A much higher number than in 2017, which was only 15 exits.
It should be noted that the first exit of the year was made by one of the reference entrepreneurs settled in our country: the Argentine Gustavo García Brusilovsky, co-founder of BuyVip, a company that sold to the giant Amazon. Years later he sold a second company he founded. There have also been several startups in the fintech sector with exits such as Captio, PAYTPV, Aplázame and Instra Credit.
Of the total 33 sales, only six have made the amounts of these sales public. Mitula, a company bought by Lifull, being the company that made the most: 118 million Euro. Pardigma, Promofarmaand Captioare in second, third and fourth place in terms of operation amount, with each company making 70, 40 and 25 million Euro respectively. A figure that is increasing in the sector and is positive for the ecosystem to continue growing progressively.
KLIKIN ACQUIRED BY REPSOL
Klikin, the platform that helps companies manage and retain their customers, made public the entry of Repsol into its share holding. The Spanish giant has taken over 70% of the company that was founded by the Argentine Gustavo García Brusilovsky. The operation was carried out on December 12, 2017, although the company did not want to make the news public until January. The operation amount has not been provided either, although different media outlets discuss a figure that ranges between 6 to 8 million Euro.
SVT ACQUIRED BY GIGAS
Gigas, the Spanish multinational specialized in cloud computing services closed the SVT purchase (subsidiary of the Semic Group), a Catalan provider of cloud hosting services is now part of the Gigas Group. The operation, which is the first acquisition for Gigas, was carried out without the need to increase capital and was mostly financed with available resources in the Gigas balance sheet. The operation was structured by means of a fixed amount (mix of cash and debt assumption) and another variable that depended on the 2018 sales. Assuming sales equal to those of 2017, the SVT hosting business would be valued at 665,000 Euro, a multiple equal to 0.8 times in sales.
CNP PARTNERS ACQUIRES 60% OF ISALUD
CNP Partners, V the Spanish subsidiary of CNP Assurances, announced the acquisition of 60% of the capital of iSalud.com, the leading buyer and broker portal specialized in medical insurance in Spain, for €30M. iSalud has been valued at 50 million Euro. The operation also involved the exit of the Inveready group and Mediaset as investors of the Spanish startup. The entry of CNP Partners in iSalud.com is the most relevant operation in terms of size to date in the field of insurtech in Spain and means a commitment by the multinational insurer to promote and develop businesses with a significant digital component through the philosophy and DNA of a consolidated startup, with high technological and innovative development in the development of value-added solutions for its clients.
PARADIGMA ACQUIRED BY INDRA
The Spanish multinational Indra made official the purchase of Paradigma Digital, a company dedicated to the development of software specializing in solutions for large companies. The operation cost 70 million Euro, although it will be increased with more indirect payments. The operation was closed in December 2017, and it was not made public until after Christmas. Paradigma Digital was founded in 2007, with eight employees. In one year it closed its first project of over one million Euro, and in two years it obtained its first international client. By then it had 54 employees, almost seven times more than when it was founded.
TRANSFERZERO ACQUIRED BY BITPESA
BitPesa, the largest blockchain company in Europe and Africa, announced the acquisition of Transferzero, the Spanish fintech company that specializes in sending money to users and companies in 200 countries in more than 50 currencies. By acquiring TransferZero, BitPesa will have a presence in four continents and a team with decades of experience working with corporate clients that require global payment solutions. Not to mention that TransferZero is the only money remittance company that does not charge commissions, except for one percent for currency trading.
RESPIRO ACQUIRED BY SEAT
SEAT acquired 100% of the Spanish startup Respiro, a company specializing in hourly car hire in Madrid. With this acquisition, which marks SEAT’s debut in the car-sharing market, the company moves towards its aim of becoming a benchmark in offering mobility solutions. All this via a proven business model, which will also provide the company with its own solution in this segment of alternative transport.
GYMFORLESS ACQUIRED BY SODEXO
Sodexo, the Quality of Life service company, announced the acquisition of the Spanish startup GymForLess. The multinational originating in France seeks to promote innovative proposals that improve the quality of life of employees and thus attract and retain the best talent. This enables Sodexo to diversify and expand its range of solutions to improve the state of mind and consequently the performance of employees and companies.
AcuityAds, the programmatic advertising technology company based in Toronto (Canada), closed the acquisition of the Spanish startup Adman Interactive, based in Barcelona and specialized in digital advertising for video through bidding systems using SSP (Supply Side Platform) for Spanish-speaking markets. AcuityAds acquired 100% of the shares of ADman Media for around 12 million Euro, distributed in an initial payment of three million; the rest will be paid over three years and upon the fulfillment of business objectives.
ERASMUSU ACQUIRED BY SPOTAHOME
Spotahome, the online booking platform for medium and long-term housing rentals, made its first acquisition with the purchase of Erasmusu, the online community of international students with a transactional model of rental housing. The agreement reached between both companies has resulted in the creation of Spotahome Group, the first European PropTech holding dedicated to intermediating online residential rentals and positioned as a leader in this segment in Europe, with more than 115,000 apartments, houses and rooms, in shared flats and in student residences.
TICKETEA ACQUIRED BY EVENTBRITE
Eventbrite, the technological ticket and event platform that drives millions of events each year, acquired Ticketea, the Spanish website that helps discover events and easily buy tickets for a variety of live experiences, including festivals, concerts and performing arts shows. The acquisition increased the momentum that Eventbrite had from the acquisition of the Dutch company Ticketscript in January 2017 and aimed to consolidate its position as the leading solution for self-management of ticket sales in Europe.
MITULA ACQUIRED BY LIFULL FOR €118M
Mitula, the search engine for classified ads for real estate, motor vehicles and employment reached a purchase agreement with the Japanese giant Lifull.Co. by which the Japanese company acquired the the Spanish technology company for 118 million Euro ($140M). The operation was carried out through the Australian Stock Exchange, where Mitula was listed since 2015, being the first Spanish technology company to achieve this.
PUBECO ACQUIRED BY TIENDEO
In late May, Tiendeo announced its acquisition of Pubeco, a free, online and ecological alternative to the traditional mailbox. The platform gathers all the commercial offers from retailers and stores. Tiendeo, on the other hand, is a web platform and app of geolocated online catalogs and offers. With this acquisition, the Spanish startup consolidates its commitment to one of its most relevant markets: France.
EL ARMARIO DE LA TELE ACQUIRED BY MODDO
Moddo, the technology company that owns Modalia, bought the digital and operating rights of El Armario de la Tele. The firm had filed for bankruptcy a year ago as a result of the Eshop crisis. According to the Modaes newspaper, Moddo had already considered acquiring El Armario de la Tele last year; the disagreements between the companies thwarted the operation.
MENS EAT ACQUIRED BY MISSION BOX
Mission Box, logistics provider for businesses and individuals in last mile distribution, formalized the acquisition of the company Mens Eat, which operates in the Levante area. With this acquisition, the Andalusian startup consolidated its growth in “Instant Delivery”, positioning itself as the fastest solution in the market. Since its creation two years ago, Mission Box has managed to multiply its value by 36 and currently has more than 200 employees on staff.
CLUBKVIAR ACQUIRED BY RESY
The leading technology company in the hospitality sector Resy acquired ClubKviar, the reservations platform with a Concierge service that works with more than 300 exclusive restaurants in Spain, offering its members unique gastronomic experiences. Resy took advantage of ClubKviar’s team of professionals and the relationship with the key players in the sector to quickly scale up and, for the time being, will continue to operate with its current business, which generates significant income with its commission per diner model.
ABILITY ACQUIRED BY GIGAS
Gigas, the Spanish multinational specialized in cloud computing services closed the SVT acquisition (subsidiary of the Semic Group), a Catalan provider of cloud hosting services that is now part of the Gigas Group. Ability, which provides cloud hosting services to companies and specializes in hosting business management applications, brings to the group more than 75 new business clients and a data center in Bogotá that is added to those that Gigas currently has in Madrid, Barcelona, Miami and Santiago de Chile.
NEXTEL ACQUIRED BY SONAE
Sonae, Portuguese group owner of several companies including Worten, acquired the cybersecurity company Nextel, which will merge with the technology company S21sec. As the company said in a statement, the corporation’s goal “is to create the largest company in the country dedicated exclusively to cybersecurity services.”The union of both companies will generate a turnover of over 35 million Euro, with a 100% dedication to cybersecurity services and solutions.
INSTANT CREDIT ACQUIRED BY INNOCELLS
InnoCells, the digital business hub of Banco Sabadell, acquired Instant Credit, , a Spanish startup that offers consumer loans at the physical and digital point of sale (e-commerce). The company, created in 2016 and located in Barcelona, acts as an intermediary through a multi-financial and multi-channel technology platform that offers loans transparently, safely, instantaneously and in a paperless manner. This solution allows the user to request credit in a fully digital way and receive it immediately. The corresponding fees will be automatically charged to their card or bank account.
LEGAL3 ACQUIRED BY VLEX
VLex acquired Legal3, the professional management software developed by LIT (Legal Innovation Technology), a Sevillian startup dedicated to the development of legaltech solutions. The aim of the operation was to combine the efforts of both companies to continue leading the process of digital transformation in which the legal sector is immersed.
APLAZAME ACQUIRED BY WIZINK
WiZink, the bank specializing in simple credit and savings solutions, acquired 100% of Aplazame, the Spanish instant financing startup for online and offline purchases. The acquisition of Aplazame, which continues to operate as an independent company, allowed WiZink to delve deeper into the field of ecommerce to better respond to the day-to-day needs of customers, taking advantage of the exchange of knowledge and synergies that will be generated between both entities.
UVINUM PERNOD RICARD
The French spirits multinational Pernod Ricard acquired the Spanish startup Uvinum, the ecommerce for wine, beer and other gourmet products. This agreement allows the Spanish startup to expand its commercial activity and have the support and experience of a multinational company. It also allows the French company to grow in the field of ecommerce.
ALIENVAULT ACQUIRED BY ADARA
Spanish venture capital firm Adara Ventures, specialized in deep-tech companies, announced the closing of the acquisition of the cybersecurity company AlienVault, a company owned by Adara and other well-known international investors, by AT&T. The operation, which was preliminarily announced in July by US telecom giant AT&T, was completed after receiving pending approval from the US authorities. This is how the acquisition of AlienVault, a company that started in Madrid and still has Spanish DNA, was revalidated as one of the most significant venture capital operations anchored in the Spanish innovation ecosystem and with a large international footprint.
NEW BIC ACQUIRED BY DEVOTEAM DRAGO
The technology consultant Devoteam Drago has reached an integration agreement with New BIC, the Spanish parent company of the Comextic and Rubicon brands. Devoteam continues its progress in Spain after the acquisition of Drago Solutions, specializing in cloud, business intelligence, big data and SAP, among other technologies. Its integration was finalized in 2017.
PROMOFARMA ACQIRED BY ZUR ROSE
Zur Rose, the Swiss medicine group, has acquired the 100% of the Catalan company Promofarma. This company was founded by David Masó and Adrià Ruiz and is a Marketplace that groups the catalog of more than 500 pharmacies and other sellers in a single website. It is the first time that Zur Rose invests in the Spanish market and does so with the aim of strengthening its position in southern Europe.
CAPTIO ACQUIRED BY CERTIFY
Certify, the largest independent software provider for managing corporate expenses, announced the acquisition of Captio, one of Europe’s leading providers in the sector. It is the first Certify acquisition outside North America and its largest international operation so far. The agreement will allow Certify to offer its expense management solutions for large, medium and small companies throughout Europe and especially in Spain, Portugal, France and Italy, where Captio has a strong customer base and a growing presence. The combined company now has more than 10,000 customers in about a hundred countries.
PAYTPV ACQUIRED BY INNOCELLS
Banco Sabadell, through InnoCells, has purchased the online payment platform Paytpv, an emerging company that acts as a provider of online payment services. PAYTPV is dedicated to companies and individuals, and aims to optimize the online and offline payment collection process. The company seeks to increase its sales and security, thus, it unifies all the collection channels in a single control panel, which simplifies the multi-bank and multi-currency payment. Banco Sabadell and PAYTPV seek to create a ‘hub’ of services with different solutions: fincom, escrow, etc. to promote “the holistic offer and a greater relationship with the client”, as the bank states.
KIUWAN ACQUIRED BY IDERA
Idera, the B2B software company, has acquired Kiuwan, a SaaS solution focused on 360º application security. The latter develops solutions to measure and analyze the life cycle of software. Currently, security teams are constantly changing to adapt to business needs and threats. However, in most companies, change management procedures is a slow process.
PLANETA HUERTO ACQUIRED BY GREENWEEZ
Greenweez, leading online retailer of eco products in Europe, has acquired Planeta Huerto, an online store selling products for a healthy and sustainable life. The acquisition is part of the consolidation strategy of the French company as the main actor for the online sale of ecological and sustainable products. Greenweez’s interest is evident: Planeta Huerto has more than 250,000 customers and has a catalog of 35,000 products.
WEBLOGS ACQUIRED BY WEBEDIA
Webedia has acquired the publisher Xataka and 30 other digital publications, Weblogs. Brand The operation will give way to the first Spanish group of telematic laptops. To date it has almost 70 million unique users. Webedia is doing well in France, the United States, Germany and Brazil and the acquisition of Weblog is a demonstration of its belief in the Spanish market. A few months ago, it acquired several 3DJuegos seasons, one of the most important and valued videogame websites. In addition, the French company is one of the most important companies in the media in Spain, turning over € 5.5M.
ZHILABS ACQUIRED BY SAMSUNG
Samsung Electronics acquired 100% of Zhilabs, a Spanish software company. The South Korean company has not disclosed the amount of the operation, which is the first since stating that it wanted to carry out an ambitious investment plan in new technologies. The aim of Samsung Electronics is to allocate 22,000 million dollars (more than 19,000 million Euro) in the next three years. The operation will help Samsung Electronics improve its automation capabilities thanks to artificial intelligence and network analysis. Despite the acquisition, Zhilabs will operate independently under its own management team.
REFORMAYUDA ACQUIRED BY CRONOSHARE
Cronoshare.com, a reference marketplace for local services in Spain, announced its acquisition by ReformAyuda, a company dedicated to connecting clients and professionals of home renovations, offering up to three free estimates from hundreds of services, such as complete refurbishments, plumbers, painters, etc.
IDEAFOSTER ACQUIRED BY CANVIA
Canvia, the leading company in digital transformation announced in November the acquisition of Ideafoster, a company based in Spain that offers rapid innovation and prototyping services for leading customers in Europe, the United States and Latin America. Founded in 2014, Ideafoster is led by entrepreneurs Pau Garcia-Milà and Anna Cejudo. Its goal is to help companies generate prototypes and test ideas in order to accelerate innovation.
1RENT ACQUIRED BY DRIIVEME
DriiveMe acquired the Spanish startup 1Rent, which was born in 2014 with a similar business model as the former. The French company, which brings together car rental companies, dealers or individuals who need to move a vehicle from one point to another, offering them through its website and app for only one Euro, has acquired the Spanish project after months of collaboration.
ELDESMARQUE.COM ACQUIRED BY MEDIASET
Mediaset acquires Eldesmarque.com after almost a year of negotiations. The signing is scheduled for January, according to sources close to the operation. The price exceeds 10 million Euro. Eldesmarque.com, the online platform born to focus on Seville and Betis, has 2.5 million unique users per month. Later, it focused on football teams outside of Madrid and Barcelona. Then, it focused on minority sports. The platform led by Fede Quintero, former Brand Representative in Andalusia, has a profitability of 1.2 million of a turnover of 3.2 million, as expected for this year.