Spectrum Equity Invests $25 Mln in WeddingWire


Spectrum Equity, the growth equity firm that has invested in Ancestry.com and SurveyMonkey, has injected $25 million into WeddingWire.

It’s not clear how much Spectrum owns, but the firm is now the largest shareholder in WeddingWire, a person familiar with the deal says. It’s also not clear if Spectrum acquired its minority stake from another investor. As part of the transaction, Ben Spero, a Spectrum MD and Pete Jensen, a Spectrum principal, are joining WeddingWire’s board.

Bethesda, Md.-based WeddingWire, which calls itself the “Yelp of Weddings,” helps engaged couples find vendors for the big event, everything from venues to DJs to photographers. The company also provides online planning tools, including wedding web sites and checklists. For vendors, WeddingWire provides a platform that helps them find clients online.

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia invested $5 million in WeddingWire in 2007 and sold the stake, four years later, to Catalyst Investors, for $11 million, according to AllThingsD, which reported Spectrum’s investment earlier today. Southern Capitol Ventures also invested in WeddingWire last December,  the Wall Street Journal says.

WeddingWire is profitable, I’m told. The company produced $10.1 million in 2011 revenue, up from $780,181 in 2008, Inc.com reports.

Spectrum’s investment comes from its sixth fund, which closed at $680 million at the end of 2010. The investment in WeddingWire was “not shopped,” a source says, and the parties did not use outside financial advisors.

Spectrum, which has offices in Boston and Menlo Park, Calif., targets rapidly growing firms that are already profitable. Investments, which range in size from $25 million to $75 million of equity per deal, can be for either majority or minority stakes. Spectrum focuses on three sectors: Internet/digital media, software & information services, and communications, media & entertainment.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Do you want exclusive news and analysis about private equity deals, fundraising, top-quartile managers and more? Get your FREE trial to Buyouts! Or subscribe now!