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Ocean voyages into Europe with latest acquisitions

Out-of-home (OOH) media owner Ocean has moved into continental Europe with the acquisition of two companies in the Netherlands.

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Ngage Media’s digital screen at Amsterdam train station

Ngage Media and Interbest both operate large-format full motion city centre and roadside advertising portfolios across the region. The acquisitions mark Ocean’s first move into continental Europe, after the company was relisted on the London Stock Exchange in January 2019.

Both companies will continue to operate under the current management, with support from Ocean.

Announcing the deal, Ocean chief executive officer Tim Bleakley says: “It’s an exciting move. These are two attractive businesses with very clear, complementary digital strategies with talented and focused management in different spheres of the out-of-home sector.

“Their combination will create an enhanced offer which benefits all stakeholders, landlords, municipalities and advertisers along with the media and specialist agencies.

“Ocean has established a strong track record of unlocking the true value of acquired businesses. We plan to accelerate both company’s development plans, aligning the businesses within their own markets by sharing DOOH expertise and fast-tracking investment.”

Holland is one of Europe’s most dynamic media markets, with top class professionals working across the spectrum

The two companies operate across key cities in the area, including Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht and The Hague. The Netherlands is also the headquarters to a host of multinational companies including Adidas, Netflix, Nike, Uber and Booking.com, of which Ocean says it already has “ongoing business relationships” with.

Ocean chairman Tom Goddard adds: “Holland is one of Europe’s most dynamic media markets, with top class professionals working across the spectrum, so I have no doubt this move is going to be both successful and symbiotic for everyone involved.”

Xavier Tilman, Ngage Media managing partner and founder, says: “Joining Ocean, and the cooperation with Interbest, enables us to enhance our objective to enlarge our digital footprint in the domestic Dutch market as well as our international ambitions to develop the medium digital out-of-home.”

Meindert van den Heuvel, Interbest managing director, said it was a “landmark” deal that would allow the business to develop and grow alongside Ocean’s branding.

These companies join the latest in a line of acquisitions for Ocean, which have included Forrest Media in March 2018, now operating as Ocean Scotland; Signature Outdoor in 2014; and MediaCo in 2015.

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