Catena acquire Italy's number one lead generator

By Harrison Sayers

Catena Media, the Swedish-based lead generation specialist, is entering the Italian market with the acquisition of ASAP ITALIA, a news lead generation company focused on the gambling and sports sectors.

ASAP ITALIA is Italy’s largest lead generator giving Catena Media an instant presence in the Italian market. It generating estimated revenue of $350,000 a month.

 “This is a strong acquisition for Catena Media, which will make us the number one lead generator within online sports betting in Italy”, said Per Hellberg, Catena Media’s CEO.

“Italy was one of the first countries in Europe to regulate the online gaming sector. This is a company that maintains a very high level of quality in terms of compliance.”

The acquisition cost is $18.6m, which will be paid in two parts. An initial $14.5m will be paid in cash up front, with the remaining $3.5m paid in instalments over the next 12 months.

If ASAP ITALIA performs well over the next year they could receive a further $7m, of which half could be paid with Catena Media shares. The company would need to generate revenue growth of around 50% over the course of the next year.

Catena Media will be adding ASAP ITALIA to a long list of recent acquisitions in 2018 which has seen the company enter into several new markets. These include the global forex, US affiliate, UK horse racing, and French sports betting market.

However, as stated in the announcement of the acquisition “almost 100 percent of ASAP ITALIA customers derive from the regulated Italian market.”

This could be a concern for Catena Media going forward after Italian Deputy Prime Minister, Luigi Di Maio, said his newly elected government would support an “absolute ban” on gambling advertising and sponsorships.

Catena Media’s newly acquired assets are expected to be consolidated into the company by July 2018 at the latest.

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