This move marks Gravity4’s entry into the Southeast Asia and Hong Kong markets to compete in the marketing cloud and programmatic space. “Pixels not only boasts one of the smartest management teams I’ve ever met, but they have also built a great business and a mobile DCO platform that we can’t wait to deploy on a global level,” said Gurbaksh Chahal, chairman and CEO of Gravity4.
The two companies cite eMarketer statistics showing that digital ad spend in the Asia Pacific region is expected to rise 22 percent to US$70 billion in 2016, with mobile and video advertising platforms being key to this growth.
Pixels' mobile ad offerings, including an HTML5-based rich media creative suite that is considered innovative in the Hong Kong market, were an encouraging factor for the acquisition, which took less than six weeks from negotiation to completion.
Kevin Huang, co-founder and CEO of Pixels, will continue to lead the company, while taking an Asia MD role for Gravity4.
"With the introduction of Gravity4’s marketing cloud to the Asian market, our customers will reap the benefits of modern cloud-marketing technology,” Huang said.
Pixels was created in October 2014, the result of a merger between Pixel Media, Snap Mobile, and Adsfactor. "If Pixels is going through a 10-step journey, this acquisition will mean Pixels jumped from step four to step eight," Huang told Campaign Asia-Pacific. And step 10, according to him, is a moving target, since Asia sits at the cusp of a digital advertising boom.
Adding 100 employees to Gravity4 after the acquisition, the combined group’s revenue in Asia is forecast to surpass US$40 million in 2016, added Chahal.
Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Pixels' presence in Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, and Shanghai adds to Gravity4's offices in San Francisco, Bermuda, Ireland, Brazil, Denmark, Turkey, Canada, Australia, Columbia, Sweden, Norway, Spain and Finland.