Drake Star acts as Exclusive Financial Advisor to Envato on Sale to Shutterstock, Inc. (NYSE: SSTK)

NEW YORK | LONDON | May 2, 2024 – Shutterstock, Inc. (NYSE: SSTK), a leading global creative platform offering high-quality creative content for transformative brands, digital media and marketing companies, today announced that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Envato Pty Ltd. (“Envato”), a leader in digital creative assets and templates. Envato’s flagship product, Elements, is a creative subscription providing unlimited downloads to a broad range of assets, templates and more—an intelligent creative companion helping creatives make their mark globally.

Drake Star acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Envato on this transaction. 

Founded in 2006 and headquartered in Australia with a presence in Mexico and New Zealand, Envato enables millions of people around the world to buy and sell creative assets, use smart design templates and learn creative skills. Through its combination of extensive breadth of asset types and a deep library, a compelling value proposition and quality artistry, Envato helps creatives get projects done faster and more effectively.

"We're thrilled about this transaction and looking forward to welcoming the Envato team to Shutterstock," said Shutterstock CEO Paul Hennessy. "Envato is perfectly positioned to serve a growing customer need for an unlimited multi-asset subscription to a library of creative content, with an emphasis on videos, audio, graphics, fonts and templates. By extending our reach to faster growing audiences and into additional content types, this acquisition will help Shutterstock fulfill its mission of connecting customers to the content they need, wherever they are so they can create, build and share their next big idea."

"Since its humble beginnings in a Sydney garage, Envato has generated more than $1.3 billion in earnings for its author community and scaled to 650k subscribers. I feel an immense sense of pride in the team for achieving this global scale as an independent business," adds Envato CEO Hichame Assi. "As we enter this next chapter, we remain laser focused on empowering the creative community to thrive and excited to achieve this shared goal with Shutterstock."

Assi further commented: "We've come to think of Eric, James and Drake Star as an extension of the Envato team! With pre-existing industry knowledge, they immersed themselves into our business, understood all the complexities and really helped prepare and coach us through this endeavour. Working across difficult timezones (London to Melbourne) was not easy, but they were always flexible and available when needed. We're very grateful for their partnership and camaraderie through this process!" 

Former CEO and co-founder Collis Ta’eed has expressed his gratitude to the community stating that he is "profoundly grateful to all those who played a part, big or small, in our collective story." Ta’eed adds, "I’ll be cheering from the sidelines, confident there is a shared dedication to innovation and creativity, as well as a continued commitment to our values." 

Ta’eed also commented: "Selling a company isn’t an everyday event for a founder. So it was a great reassurance for us that we had Eric and his team at Drake Star with us, and working closely with our management team. Their combination of pragmatic experience, strategic insight, tenacity, reliability and creativity, helped us get to a great result for the business and the team."

Eric Ward, Managing Partner at Drake Star commented: "First and foremost, we offer our congratulations to the founders – Collis Ta’eed, Cyan Ta’eed, Vahid Ta’eed, and Hichame Assi and the rest of the management team, who were absolutely faultless throughout this process and a real pleasure to work with. It’s been a privilege to have successfully advised Envato on this landmark transaction. Shutterstock is a well suited buyer given the shared vision, ambition and similar cultures of the two companies. Huge credit to Shutterstock for their pragmatism and ability to deliver this transaction in record time, particularly as this marks the largest acquisition in their history.  We are excited to see how the combined force will be able to accelerate innovation to meet the rapidly evolving needs of the broader creative industry."

Strategic Highlights:

  • Shutterstock’s existing offering complemented by Envato Elements, a leading unlimited multi-asset subscription offering
  • Expands Shutterstock’s reach within faster growing audiences such as freelancers, hobbyists, small businesses and agencies

  • Adds 650k subscribers, more than doubling Shutterstock’s subscriber base to 1.15 million
  • Increases Shutterstock’s Content revenue from video, audio, graphics, 3D and templates 

  • Bolsters Shutterstock’s content library with 10 million images, 6 million videos, 1 million audio clips, 0.5 million templates and 0.2 million graphics & fonts
  • Further diversifies Shutterstock into new content types including code & web themes, product mock-ups, fonts and templates (Slides, Powerpoint, Keynote, Wordpress, video, designs for social posts, gaming, podcasts and print-on-demand)

Transaction Highlights: 

  • $245 million cash purchase of 100% of Envato Pty Ltd at closing, after customary working capital and other adjustments
  • Expected to accelerate path to Shutterstock’s 2027 long-term targets with Envato adding 20% to annual revenues and 15% to annual adjusted EBITDA
  • Financing via a $375 million credit facility with expected drawn leverage of 0.7x net debt to 2024 combined adjusted EBITDA
  • Expected transaction closing in the third quarter, subject to customary closing conditions

Additional Information: 

Investors can find a link to the presentation material on the Envato acquisition at:

Financing Sources and M&A Advisors:

Financing for the transaction will be provided by Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, and Citizens. CapM Advisors and White & Case LLP acted as financial advisor and legal advisor, respectively, to Shutterstock. Drake Star Partners and Goodwin Procter LLP and King & Wood Mallesons acted as financial advisor and legal advisors, respectively, to Envato.

Drake Star Team: Eric Ward, Gregory Bedrosian, James Burrow, Dan Joyce, Peter Cox


For further inquiries, please contact:

Eric Ward

Managing Partner

+44 203 848 7539

Gregory Bedrosian

Managing Partner & CEO

+1 203 524 5652


Shutterstock, Inc. (NYSE: SSTK) is a leading global creative platform offering high-quality creative content for transformative brands, digital media and marketing companies. Fueled by millions of creators around the world, a growing data engine and a dedication to product innovation, Shutterstock is the leading global platform for licensing from the most extensive and diverse collection of high-quality 3D models, videos, music, photographs, vectors and illustrations. From the world's largest content marketplace, to breaking news and A-list entertainment editorial access, to all-in-one content editing platform and studio production services—all using the latest in innovative technology—Shutterstock offers the most comprehensive selection of resources to bring storytelling to life.

Learn more at and follow on LinkedIn, Instagram, X, Facebook and YouTube.


Envato is the global leader in digital creative assets, tools and templates. Serving customers worldwide, Envato is shaping the creative process with products such as

Envato Elements–the essential creative subscription–and Placeit, a premier platform for mockups and templates. With over 16 million high-quality assets made by passionate and talented global contributors, Envato is dedicated to fueling creative projects with ready-to-use design and video templates, stock videos, graphics, photos, music tracks and sound effects and more. Envato is elevating the future of sourcing creative assets–making the experience more intelligent and usable and empowering creatives to get projects done faster and more effectively.

Learn more at and follow on LinkedIn, Instagram, X, Facebook and Tuts+ YouTube.


Drake Star is an award-winning global tech investment bank that has completed over 500 transactions since 2003. Drake Star’s global team of senior professionals across offices in New York, London, Paris, Munich, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Berlin, and Dubai* focuses on mergers & acquisitions and corporate finance services worldwide in Software/SaaS, Consumer & Retail Technology, Digital Media, FinTech, Mobility & Sustainability, Digital Services, HR Tech, and Industrial Tech sectors.

Drake Star Partners is the marketing name for the global investment bank Drake Star Partners Limited and its subsidiaries and affiliates. In the USA, all securities are transacted through Drake Star Securities LLC - regulated by FINRA and is a member SIPC. Drake Star UK Limited (FRN 942020) is an appointed representative of Razlin Ltd (FRN 730805), which is authorized and regulated by the FCA.

For more information visit:

*Partner Office


For further inquiries, please contact:

Eric Ward

Managing Partner

Consumer & Retail Tech

Digital Media



Gregory Bedrosian

Managing Partner & CEO, Member of the Executive Committee

Consumer & Retail Tech

Digital Media

Digital Services

New York


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