Peform, ask a major digital media specialist, pills has completed a 100 per cent buyout of leading soccer website Goal.com from a consortium of investors including Bessemer Venture Partners.
The deal represents a major step by Perform which, according to Comscore, streams sports videos to 21 times more unique users than any other sports video operator in the UK. Over the past three years, Goal.com has expanded its reach into 15 languages, and the January viewing figures for the website reached nearly 20 million unique users.
In announcing the takeover, Perform stated that it would integrate its live sports data (GSM), video news (Omnisport), video highlights (ePlayer) and live streaming (Livesport.tv) from its catalogue of more than 40 different football leagues and competitions. The acquisition will also see Perform add its mobile expertise to the existing Goal.com services, which are already available on iPhone, Android and Blackberry.
Perform joint-CEO Simon Denyer stated: “Goal.com is the iconic global football portal and a clear market leader. This acquisition gives Perform a major brand and major worldwide coverage. We now reach over 95 million sports fans every month – a large and ever-increasing number of potential customers. This means Perform, our advertisers and rights-holder partners are now able to market to and transact with a very significant fan base.”
Goal.com CEO Ron Elwell added: “Over the past five years, Goal.com has grown from nothing to the largest football site in the world, reaching tens of millions of passionate fans thanks to the vision of our founder, Gian Luigi Longinotti-Buitoni. The acquisition by Perform provides a great platform for the continued growth of the site with the addition of world-class video content and I’m sure it will continue to be a fantastic business.”
As part of the takeover, Perform will retain three key members of Goal.com’s management team including Michael Simpson, one of the website’s original founders, who assumes the role of senior vice-president for product and content. Jonathan Gamble becomes senior vice-president for commercial and sales, and Scott Rothrock is staying on as chief technology officer.