Technology
Buying a business


Springboard has advised Livingbridge portfolio company Brainlabs on the acquisition of international agency Distilled.

Distilled is an SEO agency with offices in London, Seattle and New York. It is made up of industry leaders who speak at conferences around the globe. Distilled has also established its own prominent international conference, SearchLove (which will continue running in San Diego, New York, and London).

Distilled’s Optimisation Delivery Network (ODN) SEO A/B testing product was demerged during the process and is set to run as an independent business ‘SearchPilot’ which will continue to work closely with Distilled moving forward.

Brainlabs, which was backed by Livingbridge in 2019, is a digital marketing agency and PPC technology provider. Using data and automation, Brainlabs drives growth for some of the world’s foremost brands, in paid search, programmatic, paid social, CRO and analytics.  It has grown its headcount to 250 people in just eight years, placing it in the Financial Times fastest growing companies ranking and Sunday Times Tech Track. Brainlabs has offices in London, Austin, New York, and Los Angeles.

This acquisition represents Brainlabs first since Livingbridge invested and enables it to significantly expand its service offering and is an important first step towards realising its strategic vision of the agency model of the future: no silos, no departments, just brilliant teams centered around clients – to deliver a best-in-class service.

Springboard Partner Justin Sparks, Director James Bailey and Assistant Director Jamie Berry advised Brainlabs on the transactions.  Justin commented “We are delighted to have delivered this first strategic acquisition for Brainlabs. This was a relatively complicated transaction requiring a demerger, acquisition, and agreement, of an ongoing collaboration arrangement. We are delighted to have facilitated such a complex but ultimately value-enhancing series of deals. The partnership of Brainlabs and Distilled is hugely exciting, we look forward to seeing them thrive”.

What our clients say

Alistair McCann, Chief Financial Officer - Brainlabs Digital

Without Springboard, we would not have made this complex deal actually happen! It was a huge effort to get this across the line but worth it in the end.