Unanimis, the UK-based digital advertising network specialising in branded and performance-based display ads, is to be bought by Orange France Telecom. Orange confirmed today that it has acquired 100% of the company, which claims to reach 69% of the online UK population and enjoyed revenues of over £21m in 2008.
The acquisition means that SPARK Ventures will realise its investment in Unanimis and receive proceeds of up to £4.7m, subject to a 50% earn-out arrangement. If the full earn-out targets are reached, SPARK will make a 2.4x return in 2012 on their original £2.1m investment.
One of Unanimis’ strengths is the network of exclusive deals it has secured with sites like Shopping.com as well as other partners like The AA, Ticketmaster, ASOS and the eBay-owned Gumtree. Orange has placed itself at one end of those agreements, and will now be able to reach an estimated 71% of the UK online population (in addition to a weighty percentage in France).
SPARK retains its stake in Unanimis’ spin-out ad server, Open X.