Pure Profile sells Sparc Media unit back to original owners in $600,000 deal

Research and digital advertising company Pure Profile has announced it has signed a binding agreement to sell its media trading business unit back to its original owners for $600,000.

The media trading business was part of Sparc Media, the programmatic advertising platform acquired by Pure Profile in 2015 ahead of the company’s IPO.


The sale follows Pure Profile CEO Nic Jones committing the company “to focus on growing revenues and improving margins” in its last annual report.

Pure Profile’s announcement follows the company writing off its troubled digital agency Cohort last week following a profit and revenue slump in its annual report last month.

The latest move is part of clean out of the business following Nic Jones being appointed CEO last December and founder Paul Chan leaving the business in February.  In the ASX announcement, Pure Profile said the sale will allow management to fully focus on opportunities in Australia, the UK and the US.

In the annual report, Jones flagged the company will be focusing on growing revenues and improving margins in its core businesses.

Buyer of the business is SM1 Global, a company owned by former owners of Sparc Media who also have shareholdings in Pure Profile.

At the time of the Sparc Media acquisition, Chan said: “We successfully introduced and scaled the online research panel in Australia, proving there was a much more efficient way to gain consumer insights than annoying telephone research.

“The Sparc Media acquisition will allow Pure Profile to apply this same disruptive approach to programmatic media by providing a smarter solution to deliver relevant ads than the digital banners that follow you around the internet.

“By focusing on creating a better consumer-driven experience, and using the combined clout of both companies, we seek to make targeted advertising less ‘creepy’ and more profile-driven, ensuring marketing messages are more welcome, useful and ultimately desired by the consumer.”

In today’s ASX announcement, Pure Profile said: “The sale of the Media Trading Business follows a review by the Board and Management which concluded that the business unit was no longer aligned with Pure Profile’s core business strategies which are focused on providing data and insights, managed programmatic media and supply-side services and performance marketing.

“The business unit directly employs 12 staff and was forecast to contribute $0.5m of EBITDA in FY2019. The selling price of $600,000 is based on the same criteria used when the Media Trading Business was originally acquired.

“The sale of the Media Trading Business will allow Pure Profile management to fully focus on its core business units which it believes has greater long-term potential and which are highly-complimentary to each other. Importantly, the sale will have no impact on the range of services offered to Pure Profile’s customers.”

Pure Profile will retain the other parts of the Sparc Media business including the managed programmatic media business for advertisers and Adsparc, a supply side platform for media publishers.


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