STW stake in design company Amblique continues acquisitions and investment trend

Design agency and former Smart50 entrant Amblique has scored an investment from communications giant STW.

The investment comes as more businesses are snapping up investments and acquisitions in the online and eCommerce space. Most recently, Optus bought restaurant review site Eatability for $6 million, while Catch of the Day just purchased another deals site based around children’s homewares.

Amblique was founded in 2006 by Justus Wilde, with a key focus on eCommerce sites. The business has serviced some large retail chains, including Supre, but Wilde says the investment will help the company grow scale and service much larger businesses.

“We’ve been growing very rapidly, we’ve grown about 120% this year, and we’re trying to get into servicing the larger retailers,” he told SmartCompany this morning.

“STW already works with these bigger retailers, but we have the expertise in working in eCommerce, so for us it’s really quite a good match.”

Although Wilde wouldn’t reveal the monetary value of the investment, he confirmed STW has now taken a 40% stake. The remaining 60% is split between Wilde and his business partner.

Amblique made about $7.3 million in revenue last year and is profitable. In 2010, the company ranked 34th on the Smart50 list, with revenue of $2.4 million.

Wilde has personally been ranked in our Hot 30 Under 30 lists.

This isn’t the first interaction with Amblique and STW, however, as the company has been working with some of the 72 businesses in STW’s portfolio for some time.

“It’s a big advantage being part of a group, because some of these larger companies in the digital market space have been working on these larger retailers for some time, but not in the eCommerce space, which is what we provide.”

STW is one of the largest communications groups in the country. Earlier this year, it reported net profit after tax of $41.3 million for the 2011 calendar year, up 6.8% on the previous year. In the year to date, STW’s shares have risen 11.9% against a 5% increase in the ASX200.

Wilde also says he’s not thinking of leaving any time soon.

“There’s no intention for us to leave,” he says.

“This is a growth strategy. It’s part of us building a bigger team and providing an all-around better offer for our clients.”

Design agency and former Smart50 entrant Amblique scores investment from communications giant STW

 

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