Interactive Data Corporation (NYSE: IDC), a leading provider of financial market data, analytics and related solutions, today announced it has signed an agreement to acquire the data and tools assets of Dow Jones & Company, Inc.’s Online Financial Solutions (“OFS”) business. The transaction is expected to be completed within the next several weeks, contingent upon customary closing conditions.
The OFS data and tools are used to develop and host Web-based solutions, including news, market data, research and advanced charting, portfolio management and alerting capabilities, for approximately 200 financial institutions, active investor services, and media Web portals. These OFS assets were formerly part of MarketWatch Licensing Services prior to the acquisition of MarketWatch, Inc. by Dow Jones in 2005. Dow Jones will retain its news business and enter into a non-exclusive redistribution agreement with Interactive Data to sell MarketWatch news to new and existing customers in the OFS market.
Interactive Data plans to integrate the acquired OFS assets into its U.S. Managed Solutions group, which is part of Interactive Data Real-Time Services. The Company expects to retain a number of employees currently affiliated with the OFS business, which has operations in Minneapolis, New York City and San Francisco. As part of the plans to migrate the OFS customers into Interactive Data’s technical infrastructure, Interactive Data and Dow Jones have entered into a transition services agreement for hosting and other related services for up to two years.
Interactive Data is a leading global provider of customizable, Web-based hosted solutions through its Managed Solutions group. More than 470 customers worldwide utilize the Company’s Web-based solutions to help address the information needs of their clients and internal users, differentiate their offerings, optimize workflows and reduce operating and capital costs. Acquiring the data and tools assets of the OFS business will substantially expand Interactive Data’s growing Web-based solutions business in North America. This acquisition will also create opportunities for Interactive Data to expand OFS’s existing relationships with major U.S.-based financial institutions by offering them a broader range of sophisticated Web-based offerings, real-time market data services and other desktop solutions.
“We believe that acquiring these OFS assets will further accelerate the progress we’ve made over the past several years to rapidly grow our Web-based solutions business in North America,” stated Ray D’Arcy, Interactive Data’s president and chief executive officer. “We see attractive opportunities for us to further expand OFS’s business with its institutional customers by offering them a much broader range of services and solutions. In addition, this acquisition will bring us valuable development and support resources that can help us further scale this part of our business.”
Assuming the transaction closes within the next several weeks, Interactive Data anticipates that the transaction will be cash flow positive and earnings neutral in 2009 and 2010, and, through a combination of planned revenue growth and operational synergies, accretive to earnings by 2011.