Mobile Interactive Group Buys Golden Bytes To Extend Marketing Footprint

Another chapter in the continuing consolidation mobile service agencies, and the growth of one agency in particular, the Mobile Interactive Group. Today, the UK outfit announced that it would be buying Golden Bytes to extend its operations into the Netherlands and Belgium. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Up to now, MIG has been providing mobile marketing and mobile content services to a range of customer segments, from broadcasters like ITV (LSE: ITV) and Sky, to financial services (Barclaycard) and brands (Tropicana, Nokia), and even iPad apps for publishers (such as the tabloid the Sun, pictured). The majority of that business has originated in the UK, as well as the U.S. and Australia.

The acquisition of Golden Bytes, which has been around since 1999 and provides some of the same kinds of services as MIG does, will add coverage of the Netherlands and Belgium to MIG’s portfolio.

Golden Bytes’ customers up to now have included operators (eg, T-Mobile, Vodafone (NYSE: VOD) and KPN) as well as publishers and brands (eg, MTV, Rabobank and Shell).

Combining the two companies’ operations onto a single platform should also help reduce the costs of running those services.

The acquisition builds on another that MIG completed in June 2010, when it bought UK mobile marketing and CRM provider Piri Ltd., also for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition was made through existing funds. A spokesperson for MIG tells us that for the fiscal year to April 2010, MIG’s turnover was £77.8 million ($126 million), growth of 15 percent on the year fuelled by the rise in smartphone usage. The company also saw a 46 percent gross profit margin increase.

Meanwhile, Golden Bytes had revenue of €19.2 million ($26 million) for the year that ended 31 December 2010.