Sources inform ''Globes'' that online translation company Babylon Ltd. (TASE:BBYL) is in preliminary talks to merge with online and mobile app distributor ironSource Ltd., which was founded in 2011. The company is considered the largest in its field, and the first call for software developers seeking to distribute their products quickly. It is Google Inc.'s (Nasdaq: GOOG) top partner for downloads, and there is a good chance that the software you downloaded on to your PC was carried out by ironSource technology.
Sources estimate that ironSource will report $200 million revenue in 2013, and is a natural candidate for an IPO. The option of merging with Babylon would allow ironSource to merge with a public company that has many synergies with it. Sources close to the matter said that the companies already collaborate.
The sources said that Babylon executives estimate ironSource's company value as similar to Babylon's market cap of NIS 1.26 billion. Capital market sources believe that ironSource's value is greater, but since it is a private company, and the talks are only preliminary, it is hard to derive a precise figure.
"We are continuously examining interesting opportunities for cooperation and acquisitions as we believe that by maximizing potential collaborations, we can further strengthen Babylon's position in the industry," said Babylon CEO Alon Carmeli with the publication of the company's second quarter financial report, hinting at a possible merger.
Sources say that a possible merger with ironSource is a major reason why Babylon is in no hurry to dual list on Nasdaq. Although it filed a draft prospectus with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in November 2012, and suspended its dividend policy, in February, it said that it not yet decided on a suitable date for a possible offering in the US.
In late April, Carmeli, a major reason for Babylon's success, announced that he wanted to leave the company. Babylon has not announced a successor, and the delay may be because it wants to complete a merger with ironSource and possibly find a CEO for the merged company.
Babylon notified the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, "Following reports in "Globes" today, the company announces that it is holding initial talks with ironSource (Israel) 2011 Ltd. about the merger of ironSource into the company."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on August 13, 2013
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