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M&A‌ ‌Report:‌ Wickr, ART19 and eBay Classifieds in‌ ‌the‌ ‌News‌ ‌

M&A‌ ‌Report:‌ Wickr, ART19 and eBay Classifieds in‌ ‌the‌ ‌News‌ ‌

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.‌ ‌ ‌

Two Amazon branches made headlines this week. Amazon Web Service (AWS) gained government messaging platform Wickr and it made inroads in podcasting monetization with another investment, ART19. A deal involving eBay Classifieds Group made history as the biggest deal classified advertising also took place.

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Amazon Web Service acquired messaging platform Wickr

Amazon’s cloud-computing giant, Amazon Web Services has acquired a popular secure messaging platform Wickr. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. 

Wickr is an encrypted messaging platform used by government agencies. According to the announcement from the company, the deal opens opportunities to pick up future government contracts. 

The deal also comes in the midst of Amazon’s attempt to seize a $10 billion contract with the Defense Department, a cloud-computing deal that was originally slated to go to its competitor Microsoft Corp .

Amazon also finalized second podcast acquisition—ART19

Amazon has completed its acquisition of ART19, a podcast-hosting and monetization platform. 

The deal is Amazon’s second acquisition of a podcast company, after buying Wondery, one of the last major independent podcast networks, for a reported $300 million. The financial terms of the Art19 acquisition have not been made public. 

Podcasts have been available on Amazon Music only since September last year. The addition of Art19 will help sell ads for podcasts hosted on Amazon, offering advertisers both premium, host-read ads as well as dynamically inserted pre-made ads. 

Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino noted that “live streaming is a great compliment to our core business, and essentially gives any show an unlimited capacity. Looking to the future, live streams will continue to unlock access for fans.” 

Classifieds ads publisher Adevinta acquired eBay Classifieds 

Adevinta has announced that it has completed its acquisition of eBay’s Classifieds business. The transaction, a cash and stock deal valued at $9.2 billion, makes eBay a 44% owner of Adevinta, with a 33.3% voting stake. 

Adevinta is a classifieds ads publisher which operates in 15 countries. The controlling stake-holder is Norway-based publisher Schibsted. The companies believe the deal will result in $150 million to $185 million in cost-saving synergies through combining operations. 

The acquisition is the biggest deal in the history of classifieds advertising. 

British regulators had voiced concerns that the consolidation from this acquisition would leave Facebook Marketplace the only viable competition, but approved the deal after the two companies agreed to sell three smaller British units. 

In‌ ‌Other‌ ‌News‌ ‌

This week, there were other multi-billion dollar deals and several more in the million range announced:

  • Volkswagen finalized a $3.7 billion takeover of U.S. affiliate Navistar International Corp. Navistar, a maker of International brand trucks, will join Volkswagen’s heavy-truck unit, Traton SE.
  • Education technology company 2U, Inc. announced that it is merging with the online learning and education platform edX in an $800 million deal. 
  • E-commerce company Etsy Inc. announced that it is acquiring Brazil-based online crafts marketplace Elo7 Servicos de Informatica SA for $217 million in its first move to expand into Latin America. 
  • Charlotte, N.C.-based doughnut chain Krispy Kreme, Inc. began trading as a publicly traded company on Thursday.
  • Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Global Inc. debuted its public trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday after pricing its IPO at $14 per share.