S4 Capital confirms acquisition of MightyHive

04 Dec 2018  |  Michaela Jefferson 
S4 Capital confirms acquisition of MightyHive

US programmatic marketing services agency MightyHive has been confirmed as S4 Capital's second acquisition, in a deal worth US$150 million.

MightyHive sells itself as a "digital transformation partner for forward-thinking marketers and agencies", also advising advertisers on how to take digital marketing in-house. The agency's roster of clients includes the Wall Street Journal, Sephora and Everlane.

Sorrell formed S4 Capital following his shock departure from WPP in April. At the time he described his new venture as a "peanut" to WPP chairman Roberto Quarta - however, in a stock market trading announcement today he said the peanut had "morphed into a coconut".

"MediaMonk's award-winning digital creative production and MightyHive's market-leading programmatic offering will give S4 Capital's clients end-to-end, fully integrated and seamless capabilities in purely digital marketing," Sorrell said.

The move comes as programmatic advertising spend continues to experience significant growth, with more than 80% of digital media spend in the UK market expected to be programmatic by 2020.

S4 Capital has said it will initially focus upon three areas: developing a global digital content platform; digital media buying; and first-party data fuelling digital media planning and creative ideas.

The holding company made its first acquisition earlier this year with Dutch digital production company MediaMonks. Co-founders Victor Knaap and Wesley ter Haar and chief financial officer Peter Rademaker have all now been appointed directors of S4, alongside MightyHive's CEO and COO, Peter Kim and Christopher Martin.

According to Julie Langley, partner at Results International, we are likely to see more deals like this in the future as ambitious, growing businesses align themselves with S4.

"Sir Martin can open doors and provide access to the biggest brands globally. As a result, he can promise to turbo-charge growth and that is very attractive to an ambitious entrepreneur," Langley said.

"The deal structure both with MediaMonks and MightyHive, a combination of cash and stock, means that both acquisitions have a stake in something very exciting, with someone who has done it before. Being bought by a traditional acquirer means jostling for position once you’re part of the group.

"S4 offers a Greenfield site where MightyHive can control its own destiny and be part of something very attractive."

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