• Premier American influencer marketing company IZEA Worldwide has acquired Nathan Ruff and Lote Tuqiri founded Australian company Hoozu
  • The deal will expand IZEA’s global reach in connecting leading global brands with influencers and content creators
  • It also signifies a maturing in the multi-billion dollar influencer marketing sector


Special Report: As social media influencers continue to entrench themselves as vital components of major marketing strategies, one Aussie company driving growth in that segment has been snapped up by IZEA Worldwide. 

North America’s leading influencer marketing company IZEA Worldwide is expanding its global impact with the acquisition of Australian equivalent Hoozu.

NASDAQ-listed IZEA connects influencers with some of the world’s premier brands including the likes of Toyota, Guess and IKEA, along with Australia’s Bondi Sands.

More than just a dating app-like experience for influencers and brands, IZEA also provides a full suite of AI-assisted marketing technology, data and services.

With evident synergies for IZEA, Hoozu supports some of Australia’s best-known corporates including Bunnings, Super Cheap Auto, Ryobi and news.com.au, as well as US tech giant Netflix. Its talent management division, Huume, represents social media creators in the local market.


Yes… influencer marketing is a Big Thing 

Since it launched the first influencer marketing platform in 2006, IZEA has executed influencer marketing programs for half of the Fortune 50 companies and facilitated nearly 4 million transactions between online buyers and sellers.

IZEA rounder and CEO Ted Murphy said: “In less than two decades, I have seen influencer marketing transform from an innovative—yet strongly opposed—idea to a multi-billion dollar industry.”

Last month IZEA celebrated the 1 million registered user milestone, adding 1,000 to 2,000 new registered users each day in recent months.

IZEA attributes the sharp increase mainly to the release of its FormAI tools for creators and marketers.


Who’s behind Hoozu 

Co-founded by highly regarded entrepreneur Nathan Ruff and legendary dual international footballer Lote Tuqiri, Hoozu has pioneered influencer marketing in Australia for more than a decade.

After acquiring The Remarkables Group in 2021, Hoozu appointed as CEO local marketing specialist Natalie Giddings who will continue in the role.


Building global growth

“Acquiring Hoozu represents a significant milestone for IZEA in the Asia-Pacific region and establishes a beachhead for us in Oceania,” Murphy said, while explaining that he is excited to welcome Hoozu to the group.

“We have seen organic global growth in recent years through our efforts in the UK, China, and South Korea, and our acquisition of Hoozu builds on that momentum.”

“As a respected leader in its market, Hoozu will operate as a stand-alone, wholly owned subsidiary of IZEA Worldwide. Going forward, we see the potential for continued inorganic growth with Hoozu serving as the principal company for additional acquisitions in the region.”


Creative synergies

“This acquisition not only expands our geographic footprint, it adds new capabilities in other areas in the growing creator economy,” IZEA President and Chief Operating Officer Ryan Schram said.

“In addition to Hoozu’s core influencer marketing managed services business, the company will continue to own and operate Humme, a talent agency focusing on Australian influencers and creators.

“IZEA’s capital, technology, and global influencer marketing resources will support and strengthen Hoozu’s long-standing presence in the region, and we look forward to what lies ahead.”


Market evolution

Giddings said it was wonderful to be involved with a company that had been leading the industry globally for so long.

“Joining IZEA enables Hoozu to service its clients with leading technology, more extensive data, and best practices which will increase our campaign quality and performance,” she said.

Ruff added that the alliance signified change was coming to the influencer marketing sector.

“As the market matures, we expect to see a stage of consolidation of creator economy companies. We are excited to be a key part of IZEA’s global growth plans and help them expand both organically and inorganically in the region.”


How the deal works

The transaction consideration is a mix of cash and stock, with deferred payments tied to KPI performance. IZEA intends to invest resources to fuel additional growth, including the expansion of sales personnel and overall capabilities.


This article was developed in collaboration with IZEA Worldwide, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.  

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.