Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on T Jon Russell was Asia Editor for The Next Web from 2011 to 2014. Originally from the UK, he lives in Bangkok, Thailand. You can find him on Twitter, Angel List, LinkedIn.
Malaysian digital media firms Catcha Media and Says.com announced their plans to merge in May and now the RM60 million (around $20 million) deal has been completed.
The coming together is one of the most significant in Malaysia’s digital media space to date. The two companies have agreed to merge “certain assets” to create what they claim is one of the country’s largest digital advertising firms based on reach, its roster of 500-plus clients and cumulative advertising spend.
Catcha Media specializes in online advertising, digital content and e-commerce solutions, and it has merged two of its business units with Says.com, a nationwide social news network, to strengthen its digital offering to take advantage of the growth in Internet, social media and smartphone usage.
Says.com is a news network that collects stories using a crowdsourced and user curated model, the idea being that the community delivers news that it believes is relevant. The company is led by CEO and co-founder Khailee Ng, who is also 500 Startups‘ Partner in Southeast Asia, and it makes money via advertising and sponsored campaigns.
Speaking when the deal was first announced, Catcha Media CEO Patrick Grove voiced his expectation that the new entity would grow rapidly across Southeast Asia with a view to an IPO within the next twelve months.
Says.com has already made moves overseas. Ng previously told TNW that the company was “seeded” and ready to launch in Philippines, Singapore, and India.
The use of digital media has rocketed in Southeast Asia over the past few years, with Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and other markets ranked among the world’s top users of Facebook, and most engaged nations on Twitter.
Catcha Media claims to reach 8 million Internet users per month, while Says.com says it is used by 6 million people per month.
Headline image via Thinkstock
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