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News Corp Gets Unruly in $90 Million-Plus Deal for Video-Ad Firm

News Corp is acquiring Unruly Holdings, a U.K.-based provider of video ads distributed on social media, for $90 million in cash.

Under the terms of the deal, News Corp also will pay up to $86 million in addition contingent on performance targets.

In a related acquisition on the digital front, News Corp bought video-news distributor Storyful for $25 million in late 2013.

Unruly is a “feisty and creative company with a startup sensibility that fits perfectly with our own approach to developing businesses in the digital age,” News Corp. CEO Robert Thomson said in announcing the pact.

Unruly will operate as a separate business unit under Rebekah Brooks, chief executive of News U.K., who recently rejoined News Corp following an investigation into her role in the News of the World phone-hacking scandal.

The three founders of Unruly — co-CEOs Scott Button and Sarah Wood, and CTO Matt Cooke — will remain with the company. News Corp said Unruly will continue to work with its existing advertising and publishing clients, while also collaborating with News Corp business units worldwide.

Founded in 2006, Unruly investors included Endeit Capital, Business Growth Fund and Amadeus Capital Partners. The company has 200 employees in 15 offices, including regional hubs in London, New York and Singapore. Its primary base will remain in Shoreditch, the East London neighborhood where its Social Video Lab is housed.

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