Richard Cobb
Posted on 13 May 2015

Michelmores acts on Magicseaweed deal

The Corporate Finance team at Michelmores has acted on behalf of its longstanding client, Magicseaweed (MSW) on the acquisition by Surfstitch Group, which was announced today. 

MSW is the world’s largest user generated surf content network, providing forecasting and live reporting of over 4,000 beaches across the globe. The business was founded in Devon in 2002 and has become the world’s leading online surf forecasting platform, used by surfers and water sports enthusiasts in over 200 countries. 

MSW serves the key markets of North America, Europe and Australia, attracting over 2 million unique monthly users to its site, and over 1 million app downloads. 

Surfstitch is a publicly listed company on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) which is an industry leading online retailer to over 2 million customers through its websites surfstitch.com, swell.com and surfdome.com. 

Surfstitch undertook its ASX IPO last year and is quickly growing into a global leader in the sector. Surfstitch's focus has historically been on retail and MSW's has been on content (surf forecasts, user generated, editorials, etc). Surfstitch's mission is to become the global destination for action sports, youth lifestyle content and online retail.

The Michelmores Corporate Finance team was led by Richard Cobb and Henry Taylor, with support from Francesca Eastwood, Brian Garner, Tom Torkar and Andrew Tobey.

The shareholders of MSW were advised by Gary Partridge, Richard Day and Tracey Bentham from PWC's Bristol based Corporate Finance Team.  Herbert Smith Freehills acted as lawyers to Surfstitch, KPMG carried out financial due diligence and J P Morgan in Sydney provided corporate finance advice. 

Commenting on the deal, Henry Taylor, Lead Associate, said:  

"As an enthusiastic user of the MSW website for many years, it was very refreshing to be able to use my passion for a client's services in the context of a fast-moving international listed transaction.  We wish Ryan, Ben and Nick all the best for their exciting future under Surfstitch's new ownership".

Ryan Anderson, Co-Founder of Magicseaweed said:

"We are thrilled to be working with the Surfstitch Group as we look to expand Magicseaweed in the USA, Australasia and Europe.

"It's a unique opportunity to find the right balance of surf forecasting, inspirational content and product offerings to our global surf community and millions of users. 

We are very grateful for the outstanding support we have received from Michelmores for many years and especially at this key point in the company's history"

For further information, please visit  www.magicseaweed.com