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Bruin Capital to sell sports marketing firm Two Circles for $315M

Jan 10, 2024
Illustration of a sports jersey with dollar bill signs on the back.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Bruin Capital is selling Two Circles, a sports marketing firm that focuses on fan engagement, to Charterhouse Capital, a London-based private equity firm for roughly $315 million.

Why it matters: Data on how fans interact with their sport, especially outside of the stadium, is among the most valuable commodities in the sports industry.

Details: Two Circles CEO Gareth Balch will continue leading the company, with the current management team staying in place. The Two Circles team has also reinvested in the company and increased its shareholding.

  • Two Circles manages billions of fan data interactions and has partnered with more than 400 sports properties, including the NFL, IOC, LA28, F1, the Premier League, UEFA and FIFA.
  • The company's primary focus is on maximizing sports rights, increasing fan engagement and boosting commercial performance.
  • "In a rapidly changing media landscape, sport has the potential to become more popular and valuable than ever before. We believe Two Circles is emerging as the first digitally native global sports group," Charterhouse partner Chris Warren said in a statement.
  • The deal is expected to close during the first quarter.

Catch up quick: Bruin acquired 80% of Two Circles in 2019 in a deal that valued the company at around $40 million.

  • In the four years under Bruin, Two Circles said it grew its revenues by 450%; expanded its headcount to 600 employees; opened offices in Los Angeles, Paris and Melbourne; and acquired premium sponsorship sales agency TRM, ticketing specialists SportsInk, technology specialists Codeware and the creative content agency LiveWire Sport.
  • Two Circles marks the third big exit for the firm, following the sales of On Location Experiences ($660 million) to Endeavor in 2020 and Deltatre ($700 million-$900 million) to Bain Capital in 2022.
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