The Entertainer founder and CEO Donna Benton has confirmed that Bahrain’s GFH Financial Group has acquired the Dubai-based two-for-one offers app for a “nine-figure” sum.
While the exact figure was not disclosed, Benton said it was a nine-figure sum during an interview with DubaiEye.
The transaction resulted in the full exit of existing investors, which include MENA Venture Investments and Abraaj Group. However, Benton will remain as a key shareholder in the company.
In a social media post, Benton described signing the deal as “a proud moment.”
“Emotional as I reflect on where I started in 2001 to where the Entertainer is today. Never give up on your dreams because they do come true. Signing the deal at home with the two people I love so much couldn’t have made me happier. It’s the journey that makes you the person you are today.”
A proud moment as I signed over a majority stake in the company that I've lived and breathed for the last 17 years. Emotional as I reflect on where I started in 2001 to where the Entertainer is today. Never give up on your dreams because they do come true. Signing the deal at home with the two people I love so much couldn’t have made me happier. It’s the journey that makes you the person you are today. 😊#dreams #goals #hardworkanddedication #nevergiveup #thesmilesaysitall #theentertainer #entertainerfamily #onwardsandupwards
Hisham Alrayes, CEO of GFH, said, “Investing in high-growth technology-based companies is now among the cornerstones of GFH’s investment strategy. Over the past 17 years, The Entertainer has established itself as a market leader and we are excited to be joining the company as shareholders during the next phase of development.”
Alrayes commended The Entertainer’s strong and profitable business model, advanced digital platform and the successful global expansion currently underway, “we see significant room for even greater value creation in the Company’s existing markets as well as new locations in the Middle East, Asia, South Africa and Europe, where it has recently established and is experiencing impressive growth.”
Further into the deal, Benton said that they are delighted that GFH have seen our huge growth potential as both a company and a technology platform. “We aim to support and accelerate the growth of The Entertainer as we continue to enhance the platform and further expand our community globally.”
The Company, which was founded in 2001 in the UAE, has developed a strong merchant partner network in the GCC and beyond based on its longstanding relationships and market-leading technology.
Consumers in 15 countries across the Middle East, Europe, Asia and Africa enjoy unbeatable offers and savings at fine dining restaurants, global restaurant franchises, attractions, leisure activities, golf clubs, water parks, spas, beauty salons, gyms, fitness centres and much more – plus savings on hotel nights around the world.
Further building on its offering and footprint, the Company launched an award-winning smartphone app in 2013. It has since shifted fully from a print publication to a data-driven technology company with 38 destination-specific products, and tailored B2B solutions for corporate clients, with offers from over 10,000 merchant partners.
The app operates in a variety of languages based on location including English (global), Arabic (GCC), Greek (Athens and Cyprus) and Cantonese (Hong Kong). Last year’s annual turnover exceeded AED 130 million.