Israel's Matomy buys majority stake in Germany's Team Internet

TEL AVIV, June 23 Mon Jun 23, 2014 8:59am EDT

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TEL AVIV, June 23 (Reuters) - Israeli digital advertising firm Matomy Media Group raised its stake in Team Internet, a Munich-based direct navigation Internet search company, to 70 percent from 20 percent.

Matomy said on Monday this was its largest acquisition ever but did not provide financial details. A source close to the deal said it was worth nearly 20 million euros ($27 million).

Matomy, whose clients include American Express, AT&T and HSBC, helps advertisers to market goods and services through its network of online publishers. It earns a fee for every transaction completed through its platform so that companies pay only for results in what is known as performance-based advertising.

Plans by Matomy in April to raise $100 million on the London Stock Exchange failed when it could not raise enough money from EU investors following poor performance of high-profile Internet stocks.

Matomy CEO Ofer Druker said Team Internet will provide the company with another channel of media to offer advertisers.

"They are feeding into our suite of services and abilities," he told Reuters. "They are about performance but in another channel which is domain monetisation."

Team Internet had revenue of $23.3 million in 2013 with earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of $4.2 million. The company will continue to be led by its three founders, under the direction of Chief Executive Nico Zeifang.

Team Internet is comprised of two businesses. Parking Crew enables domain owners to generate revenue from advertising while DNTX is a marketplace for direct navigation search traffic for desktop and mobile devices. Parking Crew has monetised more than 23 million domains while over 3 billion ad placement bids per month are processed on the DNTX platform.

"We want to retain some ownership in the company," Zeifang said. "We decided that selling 50 percent (more) to Matomy and allowing them to gain a majority brings a lot to the table and helps bring the company to the next level ... There are a lot of synergies between the two products."

This was Matomy's fourth acquisition since the start of 2013. In October it bought Adquant's social advertising agency to increase its Facebook offering. ($1 = 0.7366 Euros) (Reporting by Tova Cohen)

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