Roo Life is an e-commerce portal targeted to Chinese customers and tourists, with wine one example. Photo: Attila Csaszar

OpenDNA acquires new digital agency

Wednesday, 12 September, 2018 - 15:49

Subiaco-based marketing business OpenDNA has completed a $2.5 million placement and announced it will acquire Perth-based CHOOSE Digital and Chinese-focused RooLife.

The placement will issue 71.5 million shares to sophisticated investors at a price of 3.5 cents each.

Triple C Consulting acted as lead manager for the placement.

Roo Life is an e-commerce portal targeted to Chinese customers and tourists.

Its focus is on Australia's wine and dairy sectors, tourism opportunities, hygiene products and health foods, with the intent of helping local businesses gain a toehold in the Chinese market.

Choose delivers marketing consultancy, and was founded by Warren Barry, who served as managing director, and Gary Knights, who acted as creative director.

Mr Barry founded and sold digital agencies Blackglass and the Gruden Group, while Mr Knights has built digital teams with organisations such as Professional Public Relations.

OpenDNA has said key personnel from Roo and Choose will join the company’s board and management.

“The synergies between OpenDNA, Choose Digital and RooLife provide a unique and combined ability to provide digital marketing for Australian businesses in the domestic market targeting both domestic consumers and inbound Chinese tourists and the ability to market to Chinese consumers directly in China,” Open said in an ASX release today.

“Deploying OpenDNA’s (artificial intelligence) and associated capability across these two businesses will provide the ability to better understand individual consumer behavior and to maximise engagement, with a view to driving increased revenue for the combined businesses and its clients.

“Furthermore, by providing a unique understanding of Chinese tourists and consumers, OpenDNA has the opportunity to build invaluable market insights into Chinese consumer behavior.”

Also today, Victorian professional services firm Orcoda said it had entered into an option with OpenDNA to sell its slice of Hong Kong business Smart Trans.

The option was valued at $50,000, while the acquisition would cost a further $150,000.

Shares in OpenDNA were unchanged at 3.5 cents each.