XLMedia buys Saturday Football for £16.8m


XLMedia has acquired the business and assets of Saturday Football Inc., a major online publisher of college football news for a total consideration of US$23.0 million cash (c.£16.8 million).

Founded in 2014, Saturday Football Inc. operates two leading college football media sites, saturdaydownsouth.com and saturdaytradition.com, which cover the popular Southeastern Conference and Big 10 college sports conferences. Combined, the sites generate an audience of approximately 10 million visits per month.

XLMedia will pay an upfront consideration of US$11.0 million in cash plus an additional US$12.0 million, payable over three years. In addition, the founders, who are remaining with the business, will receive US$1.0 million in long-term incentive shares of XLMedia as detailed below.  The Acquisition will be funded from XLMedia’s existing cash reserves.

The acquisition of Saturday Football Inc. follows the acquisitions of Sports Betting Dime and CBWG Sports which, when combined, significantly strengthen XLMedia’s position in the fast-growing US sports market.  The addition of Saturday Football Inc to XLMedia’s portfolio will create significant cross marketing opportunities for the wider Group and provides good reach across the South and Midwest States, including markets yet to legalise sports betting.

Stuart Simms, Chief Executive Officer of XLMedia, commented: “We are delighted to be acquiring Saturday Football Inc., cementing an already extremely productive working relationship.  Over the last twelve months we have got to know the business very well and have been hugely impressed with their team, their systems and most importantly their market reach. 

“This transaction provides additional operation depth and reach to our sports footprint which we believe is fast becoming a significant growth driver for our business.

“With the forthcoming US College Football season about to commence, the timing of this transaction couldn’t be better with our growing US presence ideally positioned to further support the team at Saturday Football Inc.”

Ken Dorward, XLMedia Head of North America, added: “We are thrilled to be delivering on XLMedia’s strategic vision for Americas sports, and look forward to welcoming the Saturday Football Inc. team, who really complement our existing portfolio as we pursue this once in a generation US opportunity.”