Oracle buys Blue Kai, gains massive consumer data mart

Analyst: BlueKai's mobile data management capabilities are its 'crown jewel'

Oracle is moving into the market for big customer data by buying BlueKai, which aggregates data on consumers and offers it to marketers via a platform for running targeted marketing campaigns on the Web, offline and on mobile devices. Terms of the deal, which was announced Monday, were not disclosed.

BlueKai's software helps manage large stores of customer and audience profile data that can be used in conjunction with various types of marketing software. The company's data marketplace containing hundreds of millions of profiles.

Its technology will be tied into Oracle's Responsys application, which is focused on business-to-consumer campaigns, as well as Eloqua, which is geared toward business-to-business marketing.

The combined products will give companies the ability "to build unmatched personalized cross-channel campaigns and customer interactions across e-mail, web, social, mobile, advertising and syndicated content channels," Oracle said.

BlueKai's data marketplace aggregates profile information from more than 200 third-party providers, according to apresentation Oracle released Monday.

The marketplace gives BlueKai customers access to profile data and also allows data providers to share profile information with each other while providing privacy controls, according to the presentation.

Customers can obtain profile data based on a variety of factors, such as past purchases, lifestyle interests and geographic similarities. Blue Kai has a Web portal that allows consumers to either manage their profile or opt out entirely.

Oracle's marketing software is just one part of a continuum of products that also includes social media monitoring, e-commerce, sales and service. Rival Salesforce.com has been building out a similar portfolio.

BlueKai's data management capabilities will serve as a key component in Oracle's strategy, said analyst Ray Wang, founder and chairman of Constellation Research.

Its management platform for mobile data is "the crown jewel," Wang added. "These audience platforms are key building blocks for the mobile marketing war ahead."

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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