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Ocelot Partners to acquire Ocean Outdoor from Searchlight Capital Partners

Ocelot Partners Limited is to acquire Ocean Outdoor from investment funds managed by Searchlight Capital Partners (Searchlight) for an enterprise value of GBP200 million.

Ocean is a pure play operator of premium digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising in the UK. Ocean’s portfolio of digital, full motion screens facilitates connectivity as out-of-home, digital, mobile, online and screen media all converge to create deeper brand experiences. Ocean has an outstanding track record of pioneering new DOOH technologies, research and thought leadership, and for facilitating creativity in DOOH.
The Company has assets covering the key cities and retail centres of the UK, including London, Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow. Ocean operates the UK’s most prominent outdoor advertising locations, including Landsec’s Piccadilly Lights, BFI’s London’s IMAX, Westfield’s Holland Park Roundabout and the Birmingham Media Eyes, amongst others. Ocean’s pioneering content partnerships, such as their work with Team GB for the Summer and Winter Olympics, and their innovative collaboration with the British Fashion Council and the BBC, represent ground-breaking initiatives for the sector. Over the past three years, Ocean has continued to outperform the UK out- of-home market through continuous innovation, and achieving major milestones, such as the acquisition of Manchester-based MediaCo in 2015, as well as the successful re-launch of the iconic Piccadilly Lights in October 2017.
Ocean’s Chairman, Tom Goddard, says: “I am very excited about the opportunities this creates for our team and for our partners. I believe the combined talent and experience this brings together will underpin a period of sustained growth.”
Tim Bleakley, CEO of Ocean, says: “The appeal of this opportunity for the Ocean brand to be at the vanguard of championing growing audiences, increased advertising effectiveness and creative digital innovation for the OOH sector is compelling.”
“We wish to thank Tom, Tim, Stephen and the entire Ocean team for our outstanding partnership that created significant value over the past three years,” says Oliver Haarmann, Founding Partner of Searchlight. “We are pleased to see Ocean maturing into a listed company with the resources to accelerate the team’s long-term growth strategy in digital out-of-home media. We wish them the best of luck for a successful future!”

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