InMobi Buys Sprout for HTML5, Rich Media Expertise

InMobi acquires HTML5 rich media creative platform maker Sprout in a move to beef up its mobile ad business.

InMobi, the independent mobile ad network, announced its acquisition of Sprout, the maker of an HTML5 rich media creative platform.

Sprout's HTML5 rich media creative platform helps agencies and brands reduce the complexity of rich media mobile ad creation and distribution. InMobi's global presence combined with Sprout's rich media technology will help the mobile advertising industry more easily build and distribute engaging rich media ads to consumers, the company said. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Sprout officials said Sprout's vision is to help advertisers "build once and deliver everywhere" on both mobile and desktop devices. Sprout's cloud-based platform brings efficiency and scale to organizations creating mobile ads and its rich media creatives are compatible with mobile devices supporting HTML5, including Apple iOS and Google Android devices, the company said. And Sprout works with some of the world's leading brands, including Chevrolet, Disney, Paramount Pictures, HTC, Sega and Nokia.

"Sprout's technology solves a critical need for the industry by helping bring engaging mobile ad experiences to consumers all around the globe," said Naveen Tewari, CEO of InMobi, in a statement. "The acquisition fits perfectly with our vision to enable the mobile ecosystem with best of breed technology and services. The entire industry will benefit from the combination of our technology and operational footprint on five continents and Sprout's platform."

Sprout will operate as a fully independent company working with the mobile advertising industry to solve the HTML5 creation and delivery problem, and will continue to expand its product in the coming months by adding workflow enhancements, analytics, and innovative new ad units, company officials said.

"InMobi's commitment to an open and independent Sprout made them the clear choice for us," said Carnet Williams, CEO and co-founder of Sprout, in a statement. "We will continue to work with all existing partners, including competitive ad networks, globally."

Meanwhile, commenting on the acquisition, Ajit Nazre, Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, said: "The mobile industry is struggling to fully capitalize on the engaging advertising experiences now possible through smart devices. This acquisition will help scale the use of rich media advertising globally - a critical next step in helping the industry realize its full potential."