Betches Media Sells for 13.8x EBITDA + Why Supergreat Is Shutting Down
RockWater analysis to make you a better investor and operator. Today we discuss why Betches Media sold for 13.8x, and why Supergreat is shutting down, following continued consolidation in video commerce.
Betches Media Sells for 13.8x EBITDA
Betches Media sold for 13.8x EBITDA.
Here’s why they got a good price…
Let’s first break down the numbers from the LBJ Media press release.
$24M upfront cash purchase price
$30M cash earnout if revenue and profit targets hit through 2026
$14.6M 2022 revenue
$3.9M 2022 adj EBITDA
Upfront payment = 1.6x revenue, 6.2x adj EBITDA
Total purchase price = 3.7x revenue, 13.8x EBITDA
44% YoY revenue growth – high for a 12 yr old company
27% adj EBITDA margin – high for growth stage media
92% of revenue from direct-sold, LT recurring brand partnerships
32M followers across millennial and Gen Z women – an attractive demo
My take on the deal…
These are decent multiples. Feels like a win-win for buyer and seller.
If cash/equity mix, multiples would be higher.
But this seems to be an all-cash deal. But 3 Betches founders (Aleen Dreksler, Samantha Sage, Jordana Abraham) didn’t take VC money, maybe just raised a F&F round. They prob owned 90+% of company.
So with upfront consideration being all cash, they just got a great payday! Plus chance to earn more.
Of note, I don’t know how achievable the earnout targets are, or how structured (e.g. is there partial payment for partial achievement?). But hopefully their advisors negotiated well 😉
Lastly, the 3 founders were likely put on attractive comp packages through 2026 earnout period, a 3 year term. That’s standard.
For LBJ, price is aligned to current market. LBJ can now also sell bigger partnerships to its existing brand partners, and gets access to new ones. Further, Betches helps LBJ double down on US market following 2018’s UNILAD acquisition.
And at that purchase price and growth trajectory, there’s still upside in the business that LBJ will reap. And the 3 founders are sticking around to help realize that.
If you’re building a company and considering strategic options, there’s key steps to take in advance of running a sales process to maximize value.
And then once you’re ready to sell (or more likely, you’re attractive for someone to buy you and you start getting inbounds), you need to be smart about designing your sales process.
I’m seeing more and more deals in this market. Just this past week Gamesquare bought FaZe Clan, and Patreon bought livestream ticket startup Moment. And there’s many more, just see my recent posts on talent rep M&A deal activity.
Some deals are good for sellers cause they were setup for success. Others not so much, since no prep was done, and the sales process wasn’t run well.
Why Supergreat is Shutting Down
Supergreat shuts down Dec 15.
Consolidation in video commerce is upon us!
Majority of staff will go to WhatNot.
And 2 months ago CommentSold acquired the assets of Popshoplive.
Let’s break down why this is happening, and what we can learn from it…
Beauty community and makeup reviews
Top investors incl Benchmark, Thrive, Shopify, Greenoaks
TRACTION TO DATE
100k+ video reviews
40k products reviewed
Made $$ by taking a % of platform sales, plus brand activations on platform (e.g. branded livestream events)
Popshop had raised a similar amount, about $25M, and also had Benchmark as a key investor. Seems Benchmark was making a sector bet, but not panning out (though I haven’t done a deep dive into rest of their portfolio).
I expect more consolidation and challenge for VC-funded social commerce startups in the near term. Part of same theme about challenges in over-funded creator economy businesses.
But that doesn’t mean I’m bearish on video and social commerce. I’m actually excited about this market long term.
But the devil is in the details…
WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
– More expensive UA post ATT. Means hard to economically reach user scale, which is key to drive revenue- Increasing video shopping competition from social incumbents like TikTok, YouTube, and category unicorns like Whatnot. They have majority of market share, means little left over for subscale upstarts. Hard to break in!
– Need more brand participation in social commerce. Adoption takes time, still lots of education and handholding needed. Same goes for recruiting more creators.
– Low margin biz model. Prob taking 10-20% of GMV. Need a lot of users to make numbers work, particularly if AOV is low. And for brand activation revenue, scaling a brand partnerships team is hard.
– US video commerce market still only a fraction of China, under 10%. Total amount raised by live and social commerce companies doesn’t match market size.
The takeaway from all this is that the social commerce market is attractive, but still nascent and evolving quickly, with strong competition. There’s a lot of headroom to grow into, but it will take time!
Newco bets and funding amounts need to match market size. Unfortunately during hysteria over past few years, particularly within creator economy, this ratio got out of whack.
So consolidation is actually a good thing. Will help rightsized the market. What do you think? Any angles I’m missing?
I’m the founder of RockWater Industries. We do financial and strategy advisory for media x commerce execs. We use market data and fundamentals to help companies build better, and help investors better allocate capital.
DM me if you want to chat.