Vista Equity Partners has agreed to buy sports data firm STATS from Fox Sports and the Associated Press. No financial terms were disclosed for the transaction, which is expected to close this summer. The Raine Group provided financial advice to AP and 21st Century Fox.
New York, May 15, 2014
FOX Sports and The Associated Press announced Thursday that they have agreed to sell their sports data company, STATS LLC, to Vista Equity Partners, a leading San Francisco-based private equity firm with over $12 billion in committed capital focused on investing in software, data and technology-enabled services companies.
FOX Sports brought in AP as an equal partner in STATS in 2005. Based in Chicago, STATS is one of the world’s leading sports technology, data and content companies, providing real-time scores, historical sports information, sports content from AP and specialized technology for viewing, tracking and analyzing sports.
Both AP and FOX Sports will continue their usual business relationship with STATS after the sale. AP customers will not be affected by the sale.
“It’s been a privilege to partner with the AP, and under the leadership of STATS CEO Gary Walrath, help grow STATS into one of the most innovative sports technology and information companies in the world,” said Eric Shanks, President and COO, FOX Sports. “We’re confident Vista will be able to build upon that success and drive STATS to even greater heights.”
“AP and FOX Sports have had an excellent and productive partnership. Together with the STATS team we’ve built a highly successful enterprise that we expect will be able to continue its growth and innovation under Vista,” said AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt.
The Raine Group acted as exclusive financial advisor to the Associated Press and 21st Century Fox. The transaction is expected to close this summer and terms have not been disclosed.
The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world’s population sees news from AP.
About FOX Sports
FOX Sports is the umbrella entity representing 21st Century FOX’s wide array of multi-platform US-based sports assets. Built with brands capable of reaching more than 100 million viewers in a single weekend, FOX Sports includes ownership and interests in linear television networks, digital and mobile programming, broadband platforms, multiple web sites, joint-venture businesses and several licensing partnerships. FOX Sports includes the sports television arm of the FOX Broadcasting Company; FOX Sports 1; FOX Sports 2; FOX’s 22 regional sports networks, their affiliated regional web sites and FSN national programming; FOX Soccer Plus and FOX Soccer 2Go; FOX Deportes and FOX College Sports. In addition, FOX Sports also encompasses FOX Sports Digital, which includes FOXSports.com on MSN, FOX Sports GO, Whatifsports.com and Yardbarker.com. Also included in the Group are FOX’s interests in joint-venture businesses Big Ten Network, BTN 2Go, as well as licensing agreements that establish the FOX Sports Radio Network.
About Vista Equity Partners
Vista Equity Partners, a U.S. based private equity firm with offices in San Francisco, Chicago and Austin, currently invests over $12 billion in capital committed to dynamic, successful technology-based organizations led by world-class management teams with long-term perspective. Vista is a value-added investor, contributing professional expertise and multi-level support towards companies realizing their full potential. Vista’s investment approach is anchored by a sizable long-term capital base, experience in structuring technology-oriented transactions, and proven management techniques that yield flexibility and opportunity in private equity investing. For further information please visit www.vistaequitypartners.com.