Digiplug, a French provider of mobile phone ring tones, has been acquired by Faith, a Japanese company that also supplies content for mobile phones. The share purchase transaction, reported to be worth 2.3 billion (nearly EURO20 million), secures an exit for Digiplug’s venture capital investors: Axa Private Equity, Innoven FCPI & Poste Innovation, managed by Innoven Partenaires, OTC Innovation 1 and Sopromec Participations.
Formed in 1998 and based in Paris and Montpelier, Digiplug develops software applications for mobile phones that allow the transfer of compressed and secure audio and image data. The first applications developed by the company in partnership with phone manufacturers, operators and content suppliers allow mobile phone users to download and play sounds. In February this year Digiplug formed a partnership with ROHM, one of the largest Japanese semiconductor manufacturers.
Faith established its first US subsidiary in June 2002 and this latest acquisition gives the company a foothold in the European market, where it hopes to develop its operations and strengthen strategic ties. Digiplug’s customers include vendors of wireless devices, such as Panasonic and Philips, and wireless network operators including Vodafone and Orange. The company also has an exclusive agreement with Universal Music for content distribution.
Nomura International and Nomura Securities advised Faith and KPMG Corporate Finance advised Digiplug’s shareholders.