Finland-based Grand Cru, a 25-person digital gaming startup, has raised $11 million in funding led by Idinvest Partners, with participation from Qualcomm Ventures and Nokia Growth Partners. The company has yet to release its first game, but the team has been developing its flagship title for the past two years.
Kiwi, a gaming studio from the team that made titles at Playdom, raised $9 million in venture capital led by Sequoia Capital. This adds to Sequoia’s other first-party mobile game development company Pocket Gems, which also competes with Kiwi on Android through titles that include Tap Paradise Cove.
Local Corporation (NasdaqCM:LOCM), an online local media company, announced the sale of its Spreebird deals business to nCrowd, which operates a social commerce website. Spreebird offers group-buy sites that are used by buyers and sellers to interact with each other. The company works with small business owners, restaurants, hotels, spas, and salons to bring various deals in town to consumers. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
ReelGenie, an online service that creates videos from a customer’s photos and digital media files, secured $0.85 million in seed funding from investors including CNF Investments, the Maryland Venture Fund, faculty members from the Wharton School, and angel investors.
Agency & Marketing Services
France-based Publicis (ENXTPA:PUB) and Omnicom (NYSE:OMC) have confirmed their intent to create a merger of equals. The two global ad agency holding companies will form a new entity called Publicis Omnicom Groupe – with ownership structured approximately 50/50 and a market capitalization of $35.1 billion. Publicis Omnicom Group reports combined 2012 revenue of $22.7 billion.
CRT/tanaka, a full service public relations and marketing services company, has been acquired by Padilla Speer Beardsley, a strategic communications firm offering services in B-to-B marketing, consumer marketing, crisis management, investor and corporate relations, creative, digital, and social media. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Sinclair Broadcast Group (NasdaqGS:SBGI) has agreed to purchase eight Allbritton Communications television stations for $985 million. The acquisitions will push Sinclair’s annual revenue to nearly $1.9 billion, based on 2012 revenue at both companies. Sinclair currently owns 149 television stations in 76 markets. The deal includes WJLA-Channel 7 and NewsChannel 8 in the Washington, D.C., market.
Technology & Communications
Canada-based Intelligent Mechatronic Systems, which makes technologies for the connected car, has raised $3.9 million in a debt round provided by BEST Funds. The company’s technology enables car drivers to access location-based information and online content while they drive. It also develops diagnostic electronics that monitor a car’s operating condition.
network infrastructure software
Singapore-based YFind Technologies, which provides indoor positioning solutions that create location-intelligent environments in buildings using WiFi networks/infrastructure, was acquired by WiFi solutions company Ruckus Wireless (NYSE:RKUS), from Walden International, Innosight Capital, and other shareholders. With the acquisition Ruckus intends to enable new location-based services by combining its Smart Wi-Fi technology with YFind’s range of location based services and analytical capabilities. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
SigmaCare, an electronic medical records company, has secured new equity funding from investment firm Marlin Equity Partners and existing investors. No financial terms were disclosed
TrueAbility, a cloud-based technical assessment tool that eliminates several steps in the recruiting cycle, has raised $2 million in Series A funding led by Austin Ventures, with participation from Cloud Power Seed Fund 2013. This adds to the company’s previous $0.75 million funding round. The company does not just focus on programming skills, but instead tests “bottom of the stack” skills or administration tasks, such as provisioning and configuring SQL servers.
Information & Business Services
Medical Management Professionals, which offers medical billing and practice management services to hospital-based physicians in the areas of radiology, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, and pathology, was acquired for $200 million by Zotec Partners, a provider of medical billing, practice management, and radiology information systems software and services for physicians. The company was sold by CBIZ (NYSE:CBIZ), a financial, employee, and medical management services provider.
Yahoo (NasdaqGS;YHOO) is reportedly close to buying eCommerce app platform Lexity, which builds apps that help merchants with customer acquisition, retention, and monetization. The company has raised close to $6 million from angel investors and also venture firms including Spark Capital, True Ventures, and 500 Startups.