Cannes Lions Parent Company Buys MediaLink

The firm will join Ascential's information services division

The parent company of the Cannes Lions festival has acquired MediaLink.

Today the parent company of the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, Ascential plc, announced plans to acquire 100 percent of U.S. advertising and marketing firm MediaLink in a deal valued up to $207 million.

The deal is expected to go through by the end of the month. Once it has cleared, MediaLink will join Ascential’s information services division.

“This is a transformational moment for MediaLink. Propelled by the global footprint of Ascential and the combined resources and talent of our organizations, we are going to write the greatest chapter in MediaLink history. We look forward to collaborating to pursue growth and new opportunities for both companies,” Michael Kassan, chairman and CEO, MediaLink, said in a statement.

Under the deal, Kassan will continue to operate under the same role as CEO and chairman of MediaLink. The private company was founded in 2003 by Kassan and since its inception has grown in the U.S. to over 120 employees in cities including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

MediaLink first began working with the Cannes Lions festival as a client in 2011. MediaLink tends to have a large presence at many industry events including Cannes Lions, but also events like CES in Las Vegas, where it sponsors parties and panels. On the ground, the company typically works tirelessly to connect media companies with tech firms, according to a report from Recode.

Ascential, a business-to-business media company headquartered in London, ensured that while MediaLink will continue to work with the festival each year, the two will run independently but that MediaLink with continue to grow its relationship with Cannes Lions “and start new ones with other Ascential products where appropriate.”

“MediaLink is a leader in the industry, with a strong and very visible brand presence in the U.S. MediaLink is an excellent fit with our existing Ascential offering and I am confident we can help accelerate MediaLink’s business into new markets by using our assets and infrastructure over the coming months and years. I see synergies between MediaLink and our portfolio of products to significantly help accelerate our existing business and create additional value for shareholders,” Duncan Painter, CEO of Ascential, said in a statement.