Blackstone-backed Liftoff and Vungle to merge

David Murphy

App marketing optimisation platform Liftoff and mobile app discovery and enablement platform Vungle have entered into a merger agreement.

Liftoff co-founder and CEO Mark Ellis will lead the combined company as CEO, with Vungle CEO Jeremy Bondy assuming the role of President. The transaction follows prior majority investments in both companies from private equity funds managed by Blackstone.

Liftoff’s technology aims to help mobile app marketers to acquire and retain high value users at scale, by delivering more than 2bn ads each day across more than 550,000 mobile apps in more than 140 countries. Vungle operates a diverse mobile monetization platform, with over 100,000 direct SDK integrations across leading mobile app publishers and 15,000 individual content creators across its influencer marketing platform.

“When we launched Liftoff nine years ago, it was our vision to offer leading solutions for mobile marketers, in a world where few independent and unbiased alternatives existed,” said Ellis. “In joining forces with Vungle, we offer not only the industry’s most complete and scaled platform, but also maintain our focus on serving our mobile customers without any conflicts or competing offerings. I am excited about our next phase of growth and innovation as we create the go-to mobile growth platform of the future.” 

Bondy added: "When I think about delivering our mission and purpose, there is no better opportunity for Vungle than combining with Liftoff. This merger accelerates our vision to become the essential destination for all mobile developers, and the joining of two leaders as part of this industry-defining transaction will drive huge value for our partners. Together, we can address the complete mobile app growth cycle – from app design and development to marketing, measurement, and monetization." 

The transaction is expected to close at the end of September.