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M&A Report: Express Scripts, Fox and Nike In the News

M&A Report: Express Scripts, Fox and Nike In the News

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In keeping with our mission to provide comprehensive advertising analysis, MediaRadar puts together a report of the most important mergers and acquisitions news each week. Stay in the loop, whether you sell advertising space or focus on business development.

This week, Express Scripts buys a key healthcare software player, Fox acquires an online loan servicer, and Nike dives deeper into tech with its acquisition of TraceMe. 

Express Scripts and Verity Solutions to Combine Forces in Acquisition

Healthcare benefits management company Express Scripts has acquired Verity Solutions, a subsidiary of Ignition Partners. 

The financial terms of the deal have not been released to the public, but Express Scripts intends to have Verity Solutions operate as a stand-alone company under the Express Scripts umbrella. In turn, Express Scripts operates under the much larger umbrella of Cigna Corporation.

Founded in 2002, Verity Solutions provides software and services for administration of the federal 340B drug pricing program through their flagship VHUB platform. Express Scripts is the largest pharmacy benefit management organization in the United States, raking in approximately $101 billion annual revenue. Working together, Verity and Express Scripts will provide a comprehensive range of 340B services to even more clients.

Fox Reaches Beyond Media With Credible Labs Deal 

Fox Corp has acquired the online loan service Credible Labs after buying a 67 percent stake in the company for $265 million. 

Fox paid a 31 percent premium; each Credible common stock holder is entitled to a cash payout of $55.25 per share. Credible Labs provides consumers with loan option comparisons from financial institutions. 

If Credible seems an odd addition to Fox Corp, let’s put it in perspective: the deal is part of Fox’s digital strategy to emphasize direct interactions with consumers. Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch noted the “synergy” between the companies and is planning to promote Credible through their core brands such as Fox Business and Fox Television Stations. 

Nike Makes a Bet on Friendly Tech With TraceMe

Nike has acquired the app TraceMe. TraceMe was founded by Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson to connect celebrity athletes with their fans. 

The app received initial financial backing from Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, and has since pivoted away from the social element and more toward following sports predictions. 

The deal showcases Nike’s expansion into the technology market along with the acquisition of predictive analytics company Celect earlier this year, and less concretely the launch of its self-lacing smart shoe the Hyperadapt

In Other News

These are some other notable deals and developments from the past week: 

  • Cisco Systems plans to acquire CRM company CloudCherry in a deal expected to close in the first quarter of 2020. CloudCherry brings to Cisco their open API platform which clients use to correlate factors that impact customer experience, in real time, using predictive analytics. 
  • Retail technology company Standard Cognition announced that it has acquired artificial intelligence and IoT technology startup DeepMagic. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Standard Cognition has been valued at $535 million prior to the acquisition.  
  • According to New York Post, FreshDirect is looking for a buyer after a failed move to the Bronx marred the company’s reputation and slowed down its growth. 
  • According to Reuters, private equity firm Apollo Global Management LLC has approached Tech Data Corporation, one of the world’s largest distributors of information technology products, for a $5 billion buyout offer. 
  • Months after the Justice Department greenlit the deal, the FCC has finally approved the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint Corporation with a 3-2 vote. T-Mobile and Sprint are the third and fourth largest telecom operators in the U.S., respectively. Combining the two companies will accelerate the development and deployment of 5G, the next generation of cellular network technology.