August 8 2014
RTLs recent acquisition of a majority stake in SpotXchange gave Decipher a nervous moment of deja vu last week, reminding us of a previous broadcaster’s dramatic foray into emerging digital media.
In 2005, ITV under a previous management regime, paid £175M for the British social media site FriendsReunited. The deal delivered £30M to the founders, Steve and Julie Pankhurst. At the time this was charitably viewed as an ‘unusual’ deal – what Sir Humphrey would have called ‘brave’- although Friends Reunited was one of the most visited UK web sites of its day. But the reality for ITV was this was a deal made in desperation by a management team who didn’t understand the new market that was unfolding in front of them. They needed a ‘digital’ play and didn’t know how to deliver it. more “Is RTL Having A ‘Friends Reunited’ Moment With The SpotXchange Deal?”