Progress Partners Advises Outside, Inc. on Pinkbike Transaction, Accelerates Growth with 8Nineteen Acquisition, New Hires and Fourth Venture Fund Closure
The firm’s activity expands service offerings, expertise and market reach in agile moves to scale growth
BOSTON, July 15, 2021 — Progress Partners, a full-service merchant bank providing M&A, capital raise and SPAC advisory expertise for emerging technology and media companies, today announced the successful transaction of Pinkbike’s acquisition by Outside, Inc., as well as an acquisition of 8Nineteen Advisory, the addition of two influential hires and the closure of a fourth venture fund. The moves accelerate the firm’s momentum and strategic plan to broaden its offerings, scale growth and create the category of value-based investment banking.
Topping the firm’s list of recent announcements is the acquisition of Pinkbike by Outside, Inc. Pinkbike, with recent expansion into reality TV, drives more than 50% of the pageviews within the mountain bike category through its stories, product reviews and thriving marketplace. Progress Partners advised Outside on the successful acquisition, which includes Pinkbike subsidiaries Cycling Tips, a rapidly growing news site for road and racing fans, and Trailforks, a GPS-enabled trail database with nearly 6 million users accessing more than 300,000 mountain biking and hiking routes.
“This is yet another key investment into the active lifestyle industry, expanding Outside’s leadership and resources for cycling and outdoor adventures,” said Robin Thurston, CEO of Outside. “This successful deal was made possible with the help of Progress Partners’ expertise and guidance.”
This acquisition is the tenth transaction completed by Outside for which Progress Partners – led by senior and managing directors Sam Thompson and Gretchen Tibbits – served as the exclusive financial advisor.
Within the firm, Tim Harned joins Progress Partners as managing director following the acquisition of his company 8Nineteen Advisory, LLC, a strategic advisory firm specializing in expanding client growth and liquidity options. This acquisition is part of Progress Partners’ exciting growth plan by further expanding its client solutions to provide best-in-class services and differentiated client value. Harned brings to Progress Partners more than 30 years of investment banking experience, specializing in M&A and capital raising in technology sub-verticals, such as fintech, mobility and data analytics.
Also joining the team as chief operating officer is Domenic Venuto, who brings more than 25 years of strategic and operational experience in the high-growth digital media, marketing and advertising technology sectors. Prior to Progress Partners, Venuto worked as COO at Amobee, a global adtech and data platform. There, in addition to scaling global operations and internal platform integrations, Venuto helped develop Amobee’s connected TV (CTV), over-the-top media (OTT) and TV go-to-market strategies, as well as accelerated SaaS platform revenue growth. Venuto has a history with Progress Partners having been an advisor and Executive-In-Residence (EIR) since 2018. The firm welcomes his strategic and operational expertise in building growth strategies in disruptive global markets and improving organizational efficiencies – a perfect fit for Progress Partners as it enters its next stage of growth executing larger transactions.
“Bringing on Domenic and Tim accelerates the firm’s momentum behind building value for the digital future,” said Nick MacShane, founder and senior managing director of Progress Partners. “We’re excited to leverage their expertise to help entrepreneurial leaders unlock significant value in larger transactions. With a growing team of experts, venture investments, SPAC and added advisory services, Progress Partners is positioned to better serve client needs on a trajectory that isn’t slowing down any time soon.”
Further signaling Progress Partners’ continued growth is the final close of its fourth venture fund. Progress Ventures, the venture investment arm of Progress Partners, recently closed Progress Partners Fund 4 with $35 million in committed capital to invest primarily in early-stage B2B marketing, media, and advertising technology companies. Newly added to the portfolio is Narrative.io, a data streaming platform providing an application-based marketplace to buy, sell, access and manage data. The addition marks Progress Ventures’ sixth investment from Fund 4, joining Tenovos, a digital asset management platform, as well as three voice-technology investments – Blutag, Instreamatic and Disruptel – and ID5, a neutral and privacy-first Universal ID solution for digital advertising.
“Innovation and strategic growth continue to be big drivers for Progress Partners as they are for the media and technology markets,” MacShane said. “We’re fueling our momentum with these milestones. With more to come, 2021 is shaping up to be a phenomenal year.”
About Progress Partners
Progress Partners is a full-service merchant bank providing M&A, capital raise, SPAC advisory and strategic growth expertise for emerging technology and media companies since 2002. As part of the next category of investment banking, Progress Partners are genuine experts who work with entrepreneurial leaders to realize superior value. Securities offered by Applied Capital, LLC, member of FINRA and SIPC. For more information about Progress Partners’ exemplary services in investment banking, advisory and venture capital, please visit progresspartners.com.