January 6, 2014, 11:25 AM

The year in e-commerce investments and mergers

The total reported value of deals and investments in e-commerce companies  dropped 37% year over year, while investments in mobile content and apps jumped, as did investments in marketing technology companies.

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Investors and buyers put $19.67 billion into digital media and commerce firms in 2013, according to Petsky Prunier, an investment bank that tracks the number of transactions and the reported value of those transactions. That reported value is down 11% from approximately $22.10 billion in 2012, and the number of transactions is down 8%. The digital media/commerce segment includes investments and merger and acquisition activities across eight subsegments, including e-commerce, mobile content and apps, social media and apps and gaming.

E-commerce, mobile content and apps, and social media and apps collectively accounted for 77% of investments in the segment. Of the 858 transactions tracked in digital media/commerce, two-thirds were investments and one-third were acquisitions.

The e-commerce subsegment accounted for 286, or 33.3%, of the 858 deals announced in digital media/commerce companies in 2013, and accounted for $7.67 billion, or 38.9% of the reported value of the deals announced in the sector. The number of announced e-commerce transactions increased 2% year over year, and the reported value dropped 37%. There were several more high-value buyouts in 2012 that in 2013, according to Petsky Prunier data. For example, the top two e-commerce transactions by value in 2012 together totaled $4.80 billion. The top two transactions by value in 2013 totaled $2.77 billion.

The next largest subsegment by reported value was social media/apps, which drew $3.80 billion in investment from 163 transactions in 2013. That value is up 56% year over year, Petsky Prunier says. Investment and M&A activity in mobile content and apps totaled $2.62 billion, an increase of 73% year over year.

Investment and M&A activity in the marketing technology sector, which includes subsegments such as analytics and reporting, content management, social and mobile technologies and customer relationship management technology, resulted in 831 transactions, up 10% from 2012, with a reported value of $18.73 billion, up 78%. Petsky Prunier says 35% of the 831 announced transactions in the sector were acquisitions; 65% were investments. The firm points to several large transactions in the marketing technology space, including Oracle Corp.’s announced purchase of e-mail marketing firm Responsys for $1.5 billion, for spurring some of that year over year growth in reported value.

The mobile technology subsegment, with 86 announced deals in 2013, had the greatest reported value amount in the marketing technology sector, $2.70 billion. The analytics and reporting subsegment had the most announced deals, 101, with a reported value of $1.06 billion.

 

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