Private Equity Financing of Latin media projects is back. Batanga, the Hispanic-focused online media company based in Miami, Florida, just announced that it got additional funding from private equity institutions. Tudor Ventures as well as H.I.G. Ventures led the new round of financing and were joined by other existing investors. The funds will be used to further develop Batanga's online advertising network, HispanoClick by investing in and implementing sophisticated and advanced targeting technologies. The amount of the funding in the Series D round was not disclosed.
The Trend of online media companies building ad-networks.
By increasing the resource allocation towards its online advertising network HispanoClick, Batanga is trying to become a major force in the Hispanic and Latin American online advertising space and a serious rival to companies such Univision.com, Yahoo!, Terra and Starmedia, who have their own online ad networks. Last fall Terra launched its U.S. Hispanic and Latin American online ad network EZ-Target. The main objective is to offer as much online ad inventory as possible to advertisers and develop the relationship with them.
Batanga already is able to sell HispanoClick’s networks audience of 5 million U.S. Hispanic monthly unique users to advertisers in addition to the monthly 3.8 million unique users of its own Batanga.com website It is also getting access to HispanoClick’s relationships with advertisers.
This private equity injection confirms that the Hispanic and Latin American markets are now subject to a trend that has happened earlier in the general market, in which large online media companies have bought online advertising networks, in order to reach substantial scale in their business. In the general market major scale is needed to handle marketers’ increasing requests for consumer insights and behavioral targeting. By adding a large online advertising network to a portal’s audience, the number of impressions and unique users is increased substantially.
Deals in the general market have included the following:
– Yahoo/Right Media,
– Yahoo/Blue Lithium,
– WPP Group/24/7 RealMedia,
In the Hispanic market, in 2007 Fox International formed DirectaClick.FOX through the acquisition of ClickDiario and Directa Networks, two online advertising networks present in the U.S. Hispanic market, but mostly targeting Latin American audiences.
Thomas Weisel advised on the transaction
Thomas Weisel Partners LLC served as financial advisor and placement agent to Batanga, Inc. on this financing.
"A year ago, we acquired the largest Hispanic pure-play ad network, HispanoClick, as a great complement to our traditional Batanga.com publishing business. We have rapidly grown our ad network business both in terms of reach and advertisers. Today our combined assets provide advertisers with unparalleled reach that is well over half of all U.S. Hispanics online. This financing will allow us to deliver even higher quality reach and drive performance for our advertising partners through the implementation of state of the art optimization and targeting technologies," said Rafael Urbina, Chairman and CEO of Batanga, Inc. "Additionally, we are actively working to extend our offerings, therefore providing similar success to advertisers in Latin America."
Since April 2008, Batanga, Inc. has aggressively built its ad network platform and expects to implement a new series of targeting and performance enhancements in the coming weeks. Currently, Batanga, Inc., maintains dominant traffic all through Latin America. Implementing targeting technologies throughout its global network, will allow advertisers to more effectively and strategically reach Hispanics in the U.S. and Latin America as well. Focusing on the market's need for mass reach and effective performance has been the driving force behind the ad network's growth.