APN News and Media sells e-commerce site Brands Exclusive

APN News and Media has agreed to sell e-commerce business BrandsExclusive for $2m in a deal with the Aussie Commerce Group which owns group buying site Cudo.

The media company had invested $36m in an 82 per cent equity stake in the company in June 2012, and when the deal is completed tomorrow they will get $2m in cash, subject to working capital and other completion adjustments, as well as eight per cent of the equity in Aussie Commerce.

Aussie Commerce achieved sales of $18m in the six months to December 31 2012, which increased to $63m for the six months ending December 31 last year.

The move follows APN divesting its last 50 per cent stake in APN Outdoor last month, as it looks to pay down debt after a management overhaul last year.

The site co-founded by Daniel Jarosch and Rolf Weber launched in 2008, and offers consumers discounted goods from well-known brands.

It is one of seven online shopping brands operated by Aussie Commerce including The Home, Luxury Escapes and Cudo. It employs over 125 people and has more than three million members.

Michael Miller, CEO of APN, said: “Following the sale of APN Outdoor in January, the divestment of BrandsExclusive is the next important step in our ongoing strategy to consolidate the structure of APN, allowing for greater management focus on our core media and digital businesses.

“The Aussie Commerce management team has a strong track record in integrating and growing online businesses. Aussie Commerce also provides the necessary scale for BrandsExclusive to prosper in the increasingly competitive online retail environment.

“This deal is in the best interests of both BrandsExclusive and APN shareholders.”

Adam Schwab, co-founder and managing director of Aussie Commerce said: “We are excited to join forces with BrandsExclusive, which has been a key player in the Australian e-commerce industry since 2009. brandsExclusive’s premium fashion offering is highly complementary to our existing businesses and is a welcome addition to the Aussie Commerce portfolio.”

Megan Reynolds


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