Handango has been the leading provider of mobile applications since the company’s inception in 1999. Saying that a lot has changed in the 18 years that we have been in business would be an understatement. 12 days marks the anniversary of the release of the first iPhone, and in 2016 alone, sales of the iPhone topped 210 million units. The world we are living in is changing fast, and Handango has always been ahead of the curve. Handango was one of the first online software stores to sell mobile apps for personal digital assistants and smartphones. Handango offered and still offers worldwide distribution, support, and e-commerce services to its partners.
On June 16, 2017, Handango was pleased to announce a 66.7% stake in limited liability company Selenium Ventures. Selenium Ventures is an app development company based in Salt Lake City, Utah that employs 45 talented software engineers to create web properties, mobile applications, and other online properties to serve their users. Selenium is most known for their partnerships with large names in the mobile gaming industry, such as 10Bet, Bet365, BetFair, Casumo, and William Hill. Selenium provides insight on applications such as the Bet365 app and provides users information on how to download the application and utilize it in such a way that maximizes revenue for the associated company — in this case, Bet365. As a result, for their efforts, Selenium Ventures is given a commission on every new user referred to the platform. Selenium owns more than 100 web properties and had net $1.2MM in the 2016 fiscal year, making it a leader in its space.
Handango has made the decision to acquire a majority stake in Selenium Ventures for a wide array of reasons, but the most prevalent one being the rationality of the decision. The mobile gaming industry is expected to more than double in the coming two years alone, and Selenium Ventures is currently one of the largest firms in its space. Due to the current oligopoly in the mobile gaming industry, Handango’s stake in Selenium Ventures allows Handango to focus on creating the applications in our pipeline and updating the ones that we have already released without diverting our focus. Entering a new space would require research and development and recruitment of talented software engineers among the other barriers to entry in the mobile gaming space. Handango believes that our stake in Selenium Ventures will allow for our investors and our company to have a vested interest in the fast-growing industry without diverting our focus from our current flagship products and services.
While able to acquire the company in its entirety, Handango has decided against doing so for the reasons listed above. Handango management is not disrupting company operations and is keeping the same CEO, board of directors, and other talented staff. Unlike other acquisitions, Handango does not view this one as a turnaround of a failing company, rather, interest in a fast-growing, dominant company. We thank the board of directors and investors in both Handango and Selenium Ventures for approving the purchase and look forward to future developments with the Selenium team.