Cox Enterprises Adds Experience to Portfolio of Companies; Acquisition Valued at More Than $200 Million
ATLANTA, Sept. 18, 2014 – Cox Enterprises, Inc. today announced the acquisition of Experience, a mobile technology company that enables fans to upgrade their seats and enjoy VIP opportunities at sporting events, concerts and live events, creating once-in-a-lifetime memories.
Experience is the first company created through a partnership announced in early 2013 by Jim Kennedy, chairman of Cox Enterprises, and technology entrepreneur Tripp Rackley. The deal comes 20 months after Cox, a media, telecommunications and automotive services conglomerate, announced plans to invest in and develop tech growth companies as part of its portfolio.
“Cox Enterprises has a long history of successfully developing and operating innovative businesses,” said Kennedy. “We formed a unique partnership with Tripp Rackley to develop pioneering and cutting-edge technology companies. We have achieved that goal.”
Experience has relationships with more than 170 individual professional and collegiate sports teams, as well as some of the nation’s most well-known and respected brands in live entertainment, concerts and themed shows. Partners include LiveNation, TicketMaster, and teams such as the Atlanta Braves, the Orlando Magic, the Atlanta Falcons, the Dallas Cowboys and the University of Alabama. Experience also continues to expand into many of the country’s premiere events and fine arts venues. The company was awarded the prestigious “Best in Sports Technology” award from SportsBusiness Journal.
“This is an exciting day for Experience and our partners as we continue to grow and scale our vision with Cox Enterprises, a partner whose values align perfectly with ours,” said Rackley. “Innovation is not a moment in time, it is a desire and evolution created from people and trust, and our partnership is deeply rooted in these principles. Experience marks the beginning of our long-term vision to build companies based on industry-making ideas.”
The Experience transaction follows Cox’s $1.8 billion acquisition of all equity interest in AutoTrader Group in January and its announcement in April to begin delivering Gigabit broadband to its residential customers this year. Last month, the company publicly announced the formation of Cox Automotive, a new operating division that aligns its portfolio of more than 20 leading global wholesale and retail automotive brands.
Cox President and Chief Executive Officer John Dyer said, “Cox Enterprises can and will leverage its strength as a private, family-owned company to make smart, bold investments. Bringing Experience into our portfolio is yet another example of how Cox continues to embrace disruptive technologies and expand into new lines of business that keep us competitive and position us for future growth and success.”