Two New York City-based mobile content players, Vindigo and Zingy, have been bought out by Japanese mobile content powerhouse For-Side.com, through its U.S. subsidiary For-Side USA. The Zingy transaction closed in May, and Vindigo was announced in Japan today. Somehow both of the transaction went under-the-radar stateside, even though both of them were officially announced in Japan. Vindigo’s spokesperson confirmed the sale but didn’t want to comment firther. Zingy CEO Fabrice Grinda also confirmed that the sale closed a while back…
Some financial details on both the deals:
– Vindigo: For-Side US is “investing” $4.2 million in the deal, though it is not clear if that is different from the buyout amount. Vindigo’s expected revenues in 2004: $7.2 million; Profit is expected to be $900K; next year it expects $18 million in revenues with $2.8 million in profit. Vindigo has 37 employees.
– Zingy.com: Revenues: 2003 revenue: $4.8 million. Expected revenue for 2004: $20 million. The company currently claims to have 20 percent of the rigntone market and expects it to grow to 40 percent by 2007.
Zingy is one of the oldest and biggest ringtones vendors in U.S., and perhaps the one with the most brand-name recognition among all vendors. Meanwhile Vindigo is a very New York-kind of company, which rose when Silicon Alley (and PDAs) was hot, and has been through a lot, trying to change its whole business model from the unconnected PDAs to the connected cellphones.
For-Side.com is a public company in Japan, traded on Jasdaq…earlier this week, it also announced an investment in UK-based mobile content company iTouchPlc…
The For-Side empire is illustrated in this company presentation (the image on the right). This is the second major Japanese company spreading its wings stateside and in Europe in the mobile content sector. Index Corp, another Japanese biggie, bought out U.S. company Mobliss earlier this year, along with two other French companies.
– iTouch Receives $9.6 million Investment From Japanese Company
– For-side.com Takes Majority Stake in South Korean Wireless Content Provider Ico
– Vindigo: Here, There and Everywhere
– Vindigo’s Radical Move From PDAs to Cell
– Index to Acquire France