Sale of online ad exchange adscale to Ströer Out-of-Home Media


Blue Corporate Finance AG (BlueCF) successfully advised the shareholders and management of adscale GmbH (adscale) on the sale of their shares to Ströer Out-of-Home Media AG (Ströer). Both parties have agreed not to disclose any information on the purchase price. The closing of the transaction is subject to antitrust approval.

Our Mandate

BlueCF, as exclusive advisor, structured and managed the entire transaction process, developed the sale documentation, supported the management of adscale in preparing the financial plan, organized the implementation of the buy-side due diligence and advised the sellers (financial investors, private investors, management) during all phases of the contract negotiations.
This successful deal once again proves BlueCF`s transaction competence in the online marketing industry and its excellent network of partners.
Deal rationale
Ströer, Germany`s leading outdoor advertising company, is currently establishing its new “online advertising” business. In line with the strategy, Ströer not only acquired the leading online ad exchange adscale, but also three other companies: freeXmedia GmbH, Ströer Interactive GmbH and Business Advertising Ltd. The group will be the largest publisher-independent online marketer. By taking these steps, it accelerates the consolidation of independent online marketers. The current COO of Ströer and former Mediacom COO Christian Schmalzl takes the responsibility for the new unit “Ströer online”.


In addition to the VC investors European Founders Fund and Holtzbrinck Networks which have financed the company since establishment, the sellers are a number of business angels and a French private equity investor.

adscale is the leading marketplace for digital advertising in Germany. The company offers advertisers and website owners a transparent ad exchange with excellent reach for digital advertising – ranging from traditional display ads, special ad forms, video and text ads. Through collaboration with well-known AGOF marketers and all major media agencies as well as direct clients and third-party providers adscale is able to combine high reach with quality. Various optimization technologies, such as targeting and real-time bidding (RTB), allow for efficiently controlled campaigns and systematic yield management. In combination with the marketplace-logic, business partners benefit from a fair price-performance ratio. adscale currently offers a portfolio of over 5,000 websites of all sizes. According to comScore, the marketplace reaches over three quarters of all German Internet users with online display advertising (76.8 percent or 44.1 million unique visitors in December 2012) and supplies several billion ad impressions every month. The company is managed by Matthias Pantke (spokesman) and Stephan Kern.

Buyer / Investor

Ströer Out-of-Home Media AG, together with its subsidiaries, specializes in all forms of out-of-home advertising media, from traditional posters through advertising at waiting booths and on vehicles, up to sophisticated digital out-of-home advertising media. The company provides its customers with extensive networks for national advertising campaigns and established the world`s largest network of out-of-home moving images with national reach. The group commercializes more than 280,000 advertising spaces and, with consolidated revenue of EUR 577.1 m for fiscal year 2011, is the market leader in Germany, Turkey and Poland and one of Europe`s leading out-of-home advertisers. The Ströer Group is headquartered in Cologne (Germany) and has approximately 1,700 employees at over 60 locations. Since July 2010 the company has been listed on the Frankfurt Exchange.



Philipp Schlüter


Jules A. Grüninger

Customer Statements

Throughout the whole process, BlueCF provided optimal support to us. With the help of BlueCF, we were able to complete the due diligence phase and, in particular the contract negotiations very quickly.

Sven Achter

General Partner Holtzbrinck Ventures

Throughout the process, with BlueCF on our side, we experienced Ströer as a competent and exciting partner with a great vision. We are now a separate entity within the Stöer Group and look forward to building “Ströer online”.

Matthias Pantke

CEO adscale

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