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Thursday, 9 December 2021

Minly acquires Emirati competitor Oulo

Minly taps into the Gulf: Egypt-based customized celeb video platform Minly acquired Emirati celebrity shout-out platform Oulo for an undisclosed amount, according to a company statement. This comes six months after Minly closed a USD 3.6 mn seed round co-led by 4DX Ventures, B&Y Venture Partners, and Global Ventures. Minly said it would use the proceeds to expand across the region and introduce a suite of new products.

What’s Minly? Minly allows fans to request personalized videos from celebrities, influencers, or musicians for a price — similar to the US’ Cameo. Minly has accumulated over 130k users, who can choose between around 1k celebrities, including Tamer Hosny, Hazem Imam and Sawsan Badr.

Minly is expanding quickly: The company recently launched Minly Watch, a service which gives users the ability to virtually attend events. The platform debuted with an exclusive concert from Egyptian rapper Wegz which had over 32k attendees.

About Oulo: Founded in 2020, the company operates similarly to Minly, it allows users to pay for customized video messages from over 300 celebrities across Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Saudi Arabia, including Bassel Khaiat, Ali Jaber and Maguy Farah.

The acquisition will bring Minly new clientele, as it will take on Oulo’s pan-Arab Leviathan stars. “Historically, the majority of pan-Arab celebrities were either Egyptian or Lebanese. Therefore, combining forces unlocks immense synergies as, together, we dominate the two most important sources of cultural content,” Oulo CEO Kamal Nazha added.

Our WHAT’S NEXT vertical reported last week that its increasingly common for startups to acquire other early-stage companies. Go read: M&A looks set to be What’s Next on Planet Startup.

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