Daily Deal Activity 09/04/12

Acquisitions:

Dick Clark Productions, which engages in the development and production of television programming for television networks, first-run domestic syndicators, cable networks, and advertisers, was acquired for an undisclosed amount by a group that includes the investment firm Guggenheim Partners. The other participants were Mandalay Sports Entertainment and Mosaic Media Investment Partners. Dick Clark Productions was sold by RedZone Capital Management, which purchased the company in 2007 for $175 million.

India-based customer service and BPO organization Hutchison Global Services, was acquired for $87.1 million by India-based telecommunications IT consulting company Tech Mahindra (BSE:532755), from Hutchison Whampoa (SEHK:13). Hutchison Global Services provides customer relationship management solutions to telecommunications networks in the U.K., Ireland, and Australia, in addition to its inbound services such as customer service, answering service, and help desk.

Medical records software developer Kryptiq, which offers a middleware that can be integrated within a clinic or hospital’s front-end system to allow physicians and other healthcare practitioners to securely communicate and share patient data with other physicians, was acquired by health information network provider Surescripts. As of April 2012, Kryptiq’s revenue was reportedly between $15 million and $30 million, and expected to grow as much as 50 percent by April 2013. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

U.K.-based Mobcast Services, which offers a cloud-based digital book service, was acquired for $7.2 million by Tesco (LSE:TSCO). Among the company’s offerings is a solution for producing and selling digital books directly to personal computers, tablets, smartphones, and digital eReaders. Mobcast was sold by Anne Street Partners and Solon Ventures, which had acquired the company for an undisclosed amount in July 2011.

The Playforge, a mobile and social game developer, was acquired by Saban Brands, a subsidiary of Saban Capital Group that acquires, manages, and licenses entertainment properties and consumer brands across media and consumer platforms. The Playforge will work with Saban Brands to establish a digital presence for some of Saban Brand’s assets, which currently include the rights to Power Rangers and Paul Frank Industries. Terms were not disclosed.

WhiteboardSelling, a sales enablement tools company, was acquired by sales and marketing consultancy Corporate Visions. WhiteboardSelling, launched in 2007, uses hand-drawn visual stories—rather than documents or slides—to help companies sell their products and services. Terms were not disclosed.

EasyRun, a provider of VoIP contact center solutions, was acquired by unified communications solutions company Tadiran Telecom. The company’s solutions allow customers to add a multimedia contact center without having to make major changes to their existing telephony infrastructure. Terms were not disclosed.

Daily deals site DealBug.com, has merged with YourBestDeals.com, one of the nation’s fastest growing local daily deal destinations, further expanding YourBestDeals.com’s market in the Kansas City area. Dealbug was founded on a platform of donating a portion of every purchase made by subscribers back to local non-profit organizations. Terms were not disclosed.

Investments:

Desire2Learn, a Canadian online education startup that offers a cloud learning platform for higher education, K-12, and Fortune 1000 companies, raised $80 million in Series A funding led by New Enterprise Associates and OMERS Ventures. The company plans to use this investment to bolster its customer service and cloud infrastructure, support global growth, and to accelerate the development of its platform.

Russia-based online shoe retailer KupiShoes, raised between $50 million and $80 million in an equity round for a minority stake from J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

Germany-based Payleven, a mobile payment services company, raised approximately $12.6 million in funding from Holtzbrinck Ventures, New Enterprise Associates, and RuNet. The company’s service, through a mobile application and a payment-card reader, enables small merchants to take credit card payments. In addition to Square, potential competitors to Payleven include SumUp, another German company that launched in August with $20 million in venture capital.

Viewfinity, which provides privilege management and application control solutions for desktops, laptops, and servers in enterprises, raised $8.5 million in Series C funding from Longworth Venture Partners, Giza Venture Capital, and JK&B Capital.

Predilytics, a healthcare data analytics startup, raised $6 million in Series A funding led by Flybridge Capital Partners and Highland Capital Partners, with participation from Google Ventures and several angel investors. Predilytics is about a year old, and has developed software that analyzes health data and provides data-as-a-service for health care companies.

Russia-based Dnevnik.ru (aka ClassedIn), which operates an online platform for distributing and categorizing educational content, has raised $5 million in funding from Runa Capital. The site’s social features enable students, parents, and teachers to share homework and assignment, provide online testing, an educational library, and real-time interactions. The company plans to use the funds to expand the software to the U.S., Europe, and China.

Pirq, which offers a location-based coupon app, raised $1.2 million in funding from existing investor Rally Capital, and is adding a digital punchcard to its retail restaurant deals offering. The round brings the company’s total funding to $3.2 million. Pirq’s service, which offers discounts on food, is different from deals from the likes of Groupon and Living Social, in that it uses an algorithm to measure when restaurants are less busy.

Fara, a developer of a shopping app for iPads, raised $0.84 million in seed funding from Quest Venture Partners, with participation from 500 Startups, Great Oaks Venture Capital and China’s Innovation Camp, as well as individual investors. The company’s app offers a curated personal shopping experience that the start-up describes as “Vogue + Nordstrom,” allowing users to discover new brands and keep track of products they like.

(8/28/12) Maxifier, which provides a campaign optimization and advertising intelligence platform to increase online ad sales and renewals, raised an undisclosed amount of funding from the Investment Arm of Dentsu Digital Holdings. Through the investment, Dentsu Group will collaborate with Maxifier, particularly through its technology-driven digital communication subsidiary Cyber Communications, on joint business development plans covering the Asian market.

Orbis Education, which creates, markets, and manages online nursing education solutions, raised an undisclosed amount of funding from LLR Partners. The company also offers marketing and student recruitment services, and solutions to migrate an academic institution’s on-campus curriculum onto an online platform. Orbis Education previously raised nearly $13 million from Lighstspeed Venture Partners and other undisclosed participants.

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