Skillz to Acquire Aarki; Etsy Purchases Depop for USD$1.62bn

Skillz AarkiSkillz Aarki

In today's ExchangeWire daily news digest: Skillz to acquire Aarki; Etsy purchases Depop for USD$1.625bn (£1.148bn); and Accenture Interactive expands to SEA via Entropia acquisition.

Skillz to acquire Aarki

Mobile gaming and esports platform Skillz has announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase demand-side platform (DSP) Aarki for approximately USD$150m (£106m) in cash and share capital. According to statements announcing the merger, the combination of the two brings together Skillz's comprehensive first-party data holdings with Aarki's purported reach of 465 million monthly users.

Last year, Skillz became the first mobile esports platform to go public via an SPAC led reverse-merger, having combined with Flying Eagle Acquisition Corp. and receiving USD$250m in additional investment, at a total valuation of USD$3.5bn (£2.5bn).

Skillz CEO Andrew Paradise commented, "Aarki’s proven machine learning will pair with Skillz’s robust first-party data to create an unrivalled value proposition for game developers. The integrated ecosystem will unlock new points of connectivity between consumers, developers, and brands, pairing the right impression with the right user at the right time, all while delivering a superior user experience."

Etsy purchases Depop for USD$1.625bn (£1.148bn)

Etsy Depop

Online marketplace operator Etsy Inc. has announced that it intends to purchase UK-based community-led fashion marketplace Depop, predominantly used by consumers under the age of 26, for the primarily-cash sum of USD$1.625bn (£1.148bn). Under the terms outlined in the agreement, Depop will continue to operate as a standalone marketplace as opposed to being folded into the main Etsy store, while the acquired firm generated revenue of approximately USD$70m (£49m) in 2020, double that of the previous year. Moreover, Depop attracted a base of four million active buyers and two million active sellers, 75% of which were also buyers, in 2020, with this cohort behaviour cited as a main driver for the acquisition.

In a statement, Rachel Glaser, CFO, Etsy Inc., commented, "We've admired Depop for a while, and are excited to have now reached an agreement to purchase this fantastic business - a company we believe is still in the early innings of its growth opportunity. We love Depop's rapidly growing gross merchandise sales (GMS) and loyal and engaged customer base, excellent user engagement and unit economics, opportunities to expand value added seller services, clear path for geographic expansion, and highly scalable, 'capital light' operating model. We're excited to build a 'house of brands' where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts."

Accenture Interactive expands to SEA via Entropia acquisition

Accenture Entropia

Completing today's trio of acquisitions across the digital media and marketing ecosystem, Accenture Interactive has expanded into the South-East Asia (SEA) region via the purchase of Malaysian digital experience agency Entropia. Kuala Lumpur-based Entropia boasts the likes of BMW; Nespresso; KFC; Tenaga Nasional Berhad; Telekom Malaysia; and Lazada, among its list of past and present clients, and has scaled to 210 employees since its launch in 2016. The acquisition continues Accenture's expansion within the Asia-Pacific (APAC) market over the previous five years, having acquired Shanghai-based Ho Communication in 2018, Sydney-based The Monkeys in 2017, and launching Droga5 in Japan having purchased the New York-headquartered creative agency in 2019.

Divyesh Vithlani, Southeast Asia market unit lead, Accenture, said: "As more consumers shift to online channels, the growth of the digital economy in Southeast Asia has accelerated the massive disruption that brands are experiencing. This acquisition will allow us to expand our digital capabilities to meet the growing demands of our clients."