September 17, 2019 – Troy, MI-based promotional marketing company Entertainment has been acquired by Afin Technologies in a deal that will see a giant of the North American couponing market reinvigorated with fresh investment and a 21st-century approach to a traditional American pastime.
Entertainment is the leading provider of local and national discount promotions throughout the US and Canada. The deal means Afin Technologies will take over operation of the company, which connects businesses to consumers with promotional offers via physical coupons in its flagship Book, and through its Entertainment mobile app.
As part of the deal, Afin will also take on fresh investment from Deepbridge Capital in the UK, and investors in the US. This will support the creation of 50 new jobs in Troy, MI, and 10 new jobs in Stockport in the United Kingdom. Entertainment currently employs 77 people in the USA.
The deal follows the US launch of Afin’s app Buxbo, which offers a fresh take on the popular American pastime of ‘couponing,’ by aiming at a young adult audience, with a social gaming approach where users team up to earn the best discounts. Buxbo is a digital marketing platform that allows brands to help influence consumer buying decisions by putting their logo and an offer on the most used screen in a consumer’s life — the phone.
Buxbo complements Entertainment’s traditional coupon-based discounts by offering targeted promotions. It puts the right offers to the right hands, at the right place and time, to help restaurants and retailers develop more loyal customer bases. Buxbo lets a business launch a new offer within seconds, and run it for as little as a day, or as long as a year or more.
In one example with a well-known restaurant chain, 75% of the offers presented to Buxbo users were used, helping drive larger average transactions and increase awareness over new menu items. Someone redeems an offer on Buxbo every 10 minutes.
By acquiring Entertainment, Afin consolidates its place in the mobile couponing market. Meanwhile, Entertainment will be reinvigorated by new management with a fresh, modern approach
Afin Technologies was founded in Stockport, UK — initially under the name SurveyMe — before expanding to open an office in Newport Beach, CA, where founders Lee and Nicola Evans are now based. Afin’s chief commercial officer, Mike Stolarski, previously worked at Entertainment for 15 years, and will be based at Entertainment’s HQ in Troy.
“Technology has moved on from the coupon books of the past, but American consumers are still passionate about saving money,” said Afin Technologies CEO, Lee Evans. “We’re looking forward to connecting businesses with the right customers in a way that benefits them both.”
Ian Warwick, managing partner at Deepbridge Capital, commented: “We are delighted to continue to support Afin Technologies on this next step of their journey. The acquisition of Entertainment promises to be great news for both parties, with the creation of new jobs and the introduction of a dynamic approach to the coupon market.”
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