Sungy set to make big global acquisition
Mobile Internet-services company Sungy Mobile Ltd on Wednesday said it acquired mobile ad network GetJar Inc for $5.3 million cash, Sungy’s first international acquisition as the company pushes to expand in the mobile application sector. mobile users, helping mobile developers “maximize monetization and distribution of their apps,” according to the company. Founded in 2004 in Lithuania, GetJar launched an application store before Apple Inc’s iOS and Google’s Android mobile operating systems appeared on the scene.
Sungy Mobile made its debut in the US market in November last year with an IPO valued at $78.5 million. Shares were originally priced at $11.22 and have been trading above $20 since the beginning of February.
“Especially after [going public], I think Sungy needs to grow globally — the China market is very competitive,” said Jack Jia, advisor at GSR Ventures. “However, I think the way the US population downloads and finds apps is somewhat different than how China does it, so maybe they’re following more of a China strategy, and I don’t know how successful that will be.”
But Jia said that he doesn’t think Sungy knows either, given how the deal structure is predominantly performancebased for the next two years.
“They’re doing an experiment. I don’t know what the market cap for Sungy is, but they can probably easily afford $5 million in cash to do this experiment and then see where it goes,” he added.
The company is best known for its GO Launcher EX app, which allows users to manage and customize applications and widgets on their Android devices, serving as “users’ first entry point to their phones,” according to the company. It also operates 3g.cn, a mobile Internet portal and a mobile reading service.
Founded in 2003 by Deng, a former China Telecom and China Mobile engineer, and Zhang Xiangdong, Sungy Mobile reported revenue of $37.5 million the three quarters ended Sept 30 — an 88 percent year-on-year increase. The company derives its revenue from in-application purchases, paid downloads, and other sources.