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Nazara Technologies Acquires Majority Stake In Adtech Startup Datawrkz

Nazara Technologies Acquires Majority Stake In Adtech Startup Datawrkz

Nazara reserves an option to acquire an additional 22% in the second tranche that is expected to close in Q4 FY23

For the calendar year 2021, Datawrkz posted combined revenue of INR 90.7 Cr (approx. $12.1 Mn)

Datawrkz tech offerings will enhance the in-house capabilities of Nazara for optimising its customer acquisition spends among others

Diversified gaming and sports media major Nazara Technologies has acquired a 55% stake in programmatic advertising and monetisation startup Datawrkz. The acquisition has helped the startup to reach a valuation of up to INR 225 Cr (approx. $30 Mn) linked to CY 22 EBITDA performance.

As per the company filing, Nazara will acquire a 33% stake for INR 60 Cr, of which INR 35 Cr will be partly payable in cash and the balance consideration of INR 25 Cr will be paid either in cash or swap of shares in the first tranche by April 22.  

Further,  Nazara reserves an option to acquire an additional 22% in the second tranche that is expected to close in Q4 FY23, said the filing.

Founded in 2013 by Senthil Govindan, IIM Ahmedabad alumnus, Datawrkz is a global advertising technology startup focused on accelerating user and revenue growth for clients through highly optimised digital advertising. With offices in the US, Singapore, and India, the startup functions as an independent trading desk to power digital media strategy, planning and execution. 

Datawrkz’s self-serve product suite for advertisers – Vizibl, includes a demand-side platform as well as a customer data platform. On the supply side, Datawrkz generates higher revenue for publishers through AdPrimus, its supply-side product set that drives higher user engagement, mediates between demand sources, and enables audience segmentation. 

For the calendar year 2021, Datawrkz posted combined revenue of INR 90.7 Cr (approx. $ 12.1 Mn) and EBIDTA margin of 12% with around 70% of its revenue coming from the US, as per CY 2021 unaudited financial statements. 

Datawrkz tech offerings will enhance in-house capabilities of Nazara for optimising its customer acquisition spends as well as enhance yields on ad monetisation of its large consumer base. This ad revenue monetisation is expected to assist many of the companies in the ‘Friends of Nazara’ network.

Further, there is an increasingly symbiotic relationship between gaming companies and adtech companies worldwide as a combination of the two will be value accretive for both businesses. With this transaction, Datawrkz aims to establish itself as a key player in gaming, covering both demand and supply side offerings for the gaming ecosystem in the US and India.

Nitish Mittersain, founder & JMD of Nazara Technologies said, “As always, it’s a great moment for us to welcome a new friend to our ‘Friends of Nazara’ network and I believe Senthil and the entire Datawrkz team will add great value to what we are building at Nazara over the next few years.”

Sharing thoughts on joining Nazara, Datawrkz founder Senthil Govindan said, “Through our partnership with Nazara, I see our pace accelerating further. While Datawrkz will be able to immediately bring our natural strengths to bear within the existing Nazara fold, this also gives both sides a tremendous opportunity to build global advertising and publisher monetisation products with a sharp focus on the gaming vertical.”

This acquisition is an addition to Nazara’s past accretion. The newly bought players will add ‘Friends of Nazara’ network, hence helping the gaming company maintain its position.

A few of Nazara’s acquisitions include:  

  • It acquired a 57.05% stake in Nodwin Gaming Pvt. Ltd (57.05%) in January 2018.
  • Nazara acquired Next Wave Multimedia at 52.38% in the same year and month. Next Wave operates World Cricket Championship (WCC), the largest mobile-based cricket simulation game. 
  • It further invested in Absolute Sports, which operates Sportskeeda at 63.90% and Paper Boat Apps at 50.91%. It is a gamified early learning subscription app. 
  • Further, Nazara acquired a 100% stake in the skill gaming platform OpenPlay in August 2021.