Pollen Street acquires majority stake in Ding
- Mobile top-up services company Ding has sold its majority stake to the London-based alternative investment management company, Pollen Street Capital Private Equity (Pollen Street) for an undisclosed amount.
Ding provides its customers with mobile top-up and credit transfer services online, on the Ding app, via partners through the Ding API and in over 600,000 retail stores all over the world. The idea for Ding was conceived by Mark Roden in 2006 in Dubai where its Asia HQ is based.
Pollen Street was established in 2013 as an independent alternative investment management company, focused on accelerating the progress of the financial, business services and technology sectors.
Pollen Street’s investment will support Ding to continue its growth trajectory, expand its technology platform, develop new products and expand into new geographies.
Ding, the world’s largest mobile top-up service, is pleased to announce that it has agreed to sell a majority stake to Pollen Street Private Equity (Pollen Street). Pollen Street Capital, a London-based, independent, alternative investment management company, will take a majority stake in the company, in partnership with a substantial investment from the existing founder Mark Roden. The transaction is expected to complete in September.
Commenting on the announcement, Mark Roden, Founder and Chief Executive of Ding said: “We are delighted to announce the investment by Pollen Street Capital. The addition of a strategic investor to our company marks an important milestone for Ding and sets us up for significant growth. Sixteen years ago, we set out with a mission to solve a real problem, to simplify how people separated from their loved ones could stay connected to those back home. At that time, the process was cumbersome and inefficient and today through Ding’s platform we have transformed how people stay connected. We are proud that we are now the global leader and have earned the trust of millions of customers all over the world.”
Founded in 2006 by Mark Roden, Ding is the global leader in international top-up and credit transfers, offering customers the ability to top-up online, on the Ding app, via partners through the Ding API and in over 600,000 retail stores all over the World. Ding now serves millions of customers around the world – who have sent almost half a billion tops-ups since we began. Pollen Street’s investment will support Ding to continue its strong growth trajectory, expand its technology platform, develop new products and expand into new geographies which will help the Company grow its global customer base and to build out the critical social purpose of keeping communities and families connected.
He added: “Over the years we have explored different investment partners and opportunities but we ultimately chose Pollen Street Capital due to their understanding of our vision for the business, but also due to their extensive and deep expertise in impact investing. We continue to be a socially driven company and we felt that in Pollen Street we had a partner that shared our values.”
He continued: “I would like to thank all our employees past and present who have helped build Ding to become the market leader. With 6 billion prepaid phones in the world and an ever-increasing demand for mobile data, there is a significant market opportunity to offer more products and services to current and future customers.”
Ian Gascoigne, Partner at Pollen Street, said: “We are delighted to welcome Mark and his team to the Pollen Street portfolio. Ding has demonstrated an impressive track record and we look forward to partnering with the team to accelerate this growth and maximising the potential of Ding’s multi-channel top-up ecosystem during our investment period. Ding exemplifies Pollen Street’s investment strategy of identifying market-leading technology businesses, whose propositions can be enhanced through further investment into technology and increasing use of data. Ding also represents our commitment to Invest With Impact. As a global platform that connects friends, family, and dispersed communities across the world, Ding allows its customers to send mobile credit and data through a simple, safe, and convenient top-up service. In doing so, Ding fosters closer links and community ties between its users whilst promoting financial inclusion and global connectivity through its highly accessible and easy to use platform.”
Ding was advised by Jefferies, Davis Polk, A&L Goodbody, KPMG and PWC. Pollen Street was advised by Keefe, Bruyette & Woods (a Stifel Company), McCann FitzGerald, Buckley and Deloitte.
The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.