Gannett brings in investors to shore up Captivate Network

Michelle Clancy | 30-09-2013

Gannett Co is partnering with Generation Partners, a private equity firm, to fund the continued growth and expansion of the Captivate Network, which will be spun out into a separate company co-owned by Gannett and Generation.

Founded in 1997, Captivate operates an IP-enabled digital place-based media network with more than 10,000 screens across more than 1,000 commercial office buildings in the US and Canada.

The partnership will provide Captivate with the necessary capital and strategic focus to drive growth in the coming years. As Gannett expands and invests in higher growth core and new businesses, this move will further focus investment on its media and marketing services transformation strategy. Additionally, Gannett will continue to participate in the future value creation at Captivate and will benefit from the ongoing distribution of content for Captivate's displays.

"Captivate is one of the most established brands in the digital place-based industry, with the largest network in North America to reach a highly desirable consumer demographic in a captive office environment," said Andrew Hertzmark, managing partner of Generation Partners. "The company has strong, long-term relationships with both advertisers and property owners and our goal through this partnership is to continue to build on Captivate's 16-year history of providing a valuable experience for viewers, building owners and advertising customers."

Captivate also announced that Marc Kidd has been named CEO. In addition, Mark Shapiro has been named Captivate's chairman and is an investor alongside Generation.

"The idea of contributing to a company at the epicentre of content, technology, eyeballs and advertising is extremely appealing and very exciting," said Shapiro. "Partnering on this opportunity with Generation and Marc Kidd, both of whom I have known for nearly a decade, combined with the strength and track record of Gannett, provides Captivate with outstanding strategic, financial and execution resources."