Singapore-based digital marketing agency Happy Marketer sold to Dentsu's Merkle in early 2019, advised by SI Partners.
Hear from CEO Rachit Dayal and MD Prantik Mazumdar on what selling the business was really like.
The highs and lows of selling a business
Since its establishment in 2009 Happy Marketer has become one of Southeast Asia’s leading data-driven marketing agencies and is well respected for providing services using data analysis to drive results-oriented customer experience and media campaigns for its clients. Headquartered in Singapore, with a digital marketing delivery centre in Bangalore, India, the agency has 55 employees.
But how did these agency leaders decide to sell the business? What was the process like? And how did they select an acquirer?
Speaking about the buyer's approach to acquisition, Prantik comments: “It wasn’t about the finances. That’s the last thing. It was about the product market fit and why they wanted to buy us, and their culture.”
"It's akin to being wooed"
The first phase of engaging with buyers has been likened to courtship. Prantik says: "It's akin to being wooed. We started engaging as partners. We said: let’s date and see if we can work on some projects together."
"It's an intense process"
“We are generally quite focussed in the business; on acquiring clients, on finding solutions for them, on running projects. And we had to forcefully take a step back and really focus on the business. Fortunately for us we had a really great team, so we could split our responsibilities so that there wasn’t that impact on the business,” states Rachit discussing the sale process.
Closing the deal
On closing the deal, Rachit, who founded Happy Marketer, comments: "announcing it to friends and family and, of course, #happytribe, sharing the moments with them, those are all super highs that stay with us for a lifetime."