Wenneker Group expands into Sweden with Bsmart
The first step can be difficult when a Dutch company wants to expand outside the Benelux. Which is what the CEOs of Wenneker Group also experienced. So, Maartje van Wijk and Maurice Wenneker, co-CEOs, approached Marktlink with their wish, a German acquisition. It took them to Sweden and their acquisition of Bsmart now opens the road to Scandinavia.
Wenneker Group specialises in the production of video content for international brands and advertising agencies. This step is their third acquisition in their buy-and-build strategy. The CEOs aspire to grow so they can continue to strengthen their position in the international arena of content production. Bsmart is a specialist producer of advertising photography, high-quality film production combined with CGI and 3D animation. Its acquisition is an unexpected step into Scandinavia. Notwithstanding, they still have ambitions for Germany, says Arne Pastoors, who oversaw the deal from Marktlink. ‘Wenneker Group distinguishes itself with its internationalisation. To my knowledge, they are the only specialised international consolidator in a market that is mostly saturated with local players.’
Local market and international network
The Düsseldorf office of Marktlink cast around for opportunities. ‘Our network is quite large on the international front. The advantage of a Marktlink office in Germany is that we can provide our Dutch customers with the best possible support, including tackling language barriers and being specifically acquainted with the local market. We came upon Bsmart through being a member of the Geneva Capital Group. For this transaction, we re-engaged parties with people on location, which in this case was in Sweden. This is especially useful when it comes to matters such as tax law. The transaction with Bsmart is now complete, but the search for a German acquisition is also underway.’
Personal conversations and networking dinners
The basis for the success of the transaction was laid down in Sweden. Marktlink accompanied the CEOs on an introductory trip to the country. ‘That was our primary goal, and at the same time we could get to know the market landscape.’ Both CEOs of Wenneker are really positive about their collaboration with the Swedish company. ‘With the addition of Bsmart, we are expanding into a category of content in and about gaming. We’re excited to work with all of the Scandinavian brands and use their production power to the full.’ It is also a terrific move for Bsmart founder Tomas Lestrup and CEO Akram Janz. ‘Wenneker Group is the perfect fit to grow our group in Scandinavia and be part of a larger ecosystem.’