Garden Connect, leading online marketing agency for the horticulture businesses, is being acquired by Haymarket Media Group and Green Solutions Software GmbH. This merger allows clients, customers and partners to benefit from enhanced experience and services. Hogenhouck m&a assisted Garden Connect in this transaction.
Omnichannel solutions for the garden industry
Garden Connect was founded in 2002 by three enterprising friends with a shared passion for gardening. Garden Connect has become a trusted partner for garden centers with 35 professionals helping more than 300 ambitious garden centers grow their business. Garden Connect operates in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Belgium. The joint venture with Haymarket Media Group and Green Solutions will provide enhanced and expanded service offerings to Garden Connect and Green Solutions customers and partners. By combining the qualities and experience of the three companies, they can now deliver the best possible omnichannel solutions to all industry stakeholders, from retailers and growers to nurseries and suppliers.
Substantial expansion of offerings
The anchor of Green Solutions’ digital product offering is its cloud software, which allows companies to centrally integrate all channels, i.e. both online and offline. This includes functionalities from webshops, websites, newsletters, dropshipping, CRM, SEO, SEA, social media to in-store signage, apps and loyalty cards. Garden Connect customers get access to this platform and Green Solutions’ extensive database that includes thousands of photos, videos, editorial reports and product data.
Clear growth plan
Edwin Meijer, co-founder and CMO of Garden Connect on the partnership: “With the three of us, we sim to deliver the best possible experience to every stakeholder in the garden industry. The acquisition provides new opportunities to significantly expand our offering; from access to thousands of new images in the extensive photo database to integration with the Green Solutions platform. With Green Solutions, there is a clear plan to significantly strengthen Garden Connect’s existing growth trajectory in the coming years.” The Garden Connect team will continue to operate from Amsterdam in conjunction with Green Solutions.
Bundling of platforms
Green Solutions and Garden Connect are already leaders in their markets. With Haymarket’s investment and network, the company is expanding its presence to the Netherlands, in addition to existing locations in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore and India.
Cross-border joining forces
With 1,300 employees, Haymarket has long held a leading position in media and data for the gardening industry. It is the parent company of brands such as Horticulture Week (UK) and TASPO (DE), and clients include Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Gardens (RHS) and Tillington Group of Garden Centres.
Kevin Costello, Global Chief Executive at Haymarket Media Group said, “Haymarket and Green Solutions have enjoyed working together for some time, and now that we have Garden Connect on board, we have found the perfect platform to further develop Green Solutions International. Our combination of industry knowledge and experience meant that we all quickly realized how much more beneficial it would be to work together and join forces, rather than compete in the same markets. I look forward to what we can accomplish in the coming months for the entire gardening industry.”
Alexander Kelm, Managing Director and CEO of Green Solutions added, “Garden Connect aligns perfectly with our internationalization strategy where Garden Connect becomes a solid part of the Green Solutions family. With years of experience, overlapping products and a customer base that has existed for decades, Garden Connect is poised to take our international business to the next level.”
Springboard for international expansion
The Hogenhouck team that advised Garden Connect in this cross-border transaction included Victor Rosier, Mike van der Heijden and Stefan Nguyen. Victor Rosier on this transaction: “In a phenomenal partnership with these three entrepreneurs, they were able to make informed decisions about their next step. This ensured a quick turnaround time and a nice completion. With this, Garden Connect can offer existing and new customers in this beautiful niche market a broad innovative platform and international expansion is on the horizon.”