TPG Growth set to acquire TRACE, Africa’s music and entertainment company
TPG Growth, the middle market and growth equity investment platform of global alternative asset firm TPG, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire a majority stake in TRACE, the afro-urban music and entertainment media.
The remaining stake will be owned by TRACE’s co-founder and management team. TPG Growth will invest alongside Evolution Media and Satya Capital.
As part of the transaction, MTG, a leading international digital entertainment group that invested in TRACE in 2014, will sell its stake in the company. The transaction is subject to standard closing conditions, including regulatory clearance.
Founded in 2003, TRACE is a global multi-platform media and entertainment company that reaches 200 million viewers and listeners across 160 countries.
Recognized as the leading youth media brand in Sub-Saharan Africa, TRACE owns and operates 30 digital and mobile services, 21 pay TV channels, and seven FM radio stations. The platform hosts more than 400 concerts, web simulcasts with 360 degree immersive technology, talent search competitions and events across the globe each year.
“By partnering with TPG Growth, a global investor known for its ability to grow and scale businesses, we are well-positioned to build on our success and accelerate our transformation into the leading global afro-urban digital entertainment group. We will leverage our unique assets and TPG Growth’s deep experience with groundbreaking entertainment and technology businesses to launch “Episode 2” of TRACE,” said Olivier Laouchez, co-founder, Chairman, and CEO of TRACE.
TPG Growth’s investments in media and entertainment have included Spotify, a leading music streaming service, ipsy, an online makeup subscription and delivery service, and STX Entertainment, a next-generation motion picture, television, and digital content studio. Across TPG’s platforms, current and past investments also include Airbnb, Vice Media, Creative Artists Agency, Cirque du Soleil, and Uber.
“The African music and entertainment industry is dynamic and has experienced huge growth in the last decade, driven by the booming youth population and rapid adoption of digital technology,” said Yemi Lalude, Managing Partner at TPG Africa. “As smartphone penetration on the African continent continues to rise, the way young people consume content is migrating to mobile and digital. We are very excited to help grow the TRACE brand not only in Africa but worldwide.”
TPG Growth’s partnership with TRACE highlights the rich opportunities that exist to invest in companies that have a presence in Africa, but can also operate successfully on a global level.
TPG Growth has five investments across Africa, which include Gro Intelligence, a global agricultural data business, Frontier Car Group, which supports Nigeria’s second-car sales business Cars45.com and Ecoles Yassamine, a Moroccan private school network.