CMO's top 10 martech stories for the week - 12 April 2018

All the latest martech and adtech news this week from Simple, Salesforce, TripleLift, Twilio, Gather, Origami Logic, and more.

Simple debuts Intelligent Marketing Platform

Australian business software vendor, Simple, has partnered with Microsoft to debut the new Intelligent Marketing Platform in a bid to disrupt the marketing resource management (MRM) space.

The platform is among the first to be built by an independent software vendor on top of the Microsoft Business Applications Platform. It combines functionality such as PowerApps, Dynamics 365 for Marketing and Office365 as well as new capabilities offered with Power BI, microsoft’s common data service for analytics. The ambition is to improve the way marketers manage budgets and planning across touchpoints, as well as lift the effectiveness of existing technology platforms.

“Simple’s Intelligent Marketing Platform injects artificial intelligence into upstream marketing planning, where there is none today, giving CMOs new insight into how they can maximise the return on marketing investment for the entire organisation,” Simple CEO, Aden Forrest, said.

“Marketing Resource Management solutions have traditionally imposed technology on marketing teams, requiring them to learn new ways of working. Simple’s Intelligent Marketing Platform will transform the way marketing teams work using many of the tools they already use, reducing friction, slashing complexity and achieving maximum effectiveness.”

Simple counts a number of bluechip customers among its clients across banking, superannuation, retail and entertainment sectors.

Informatic Communication Investment signs with Origami Logic

Australian-based Informatic Communication Investment (ICI) has signed exclusive rights with US company, Origami Logic, to bring its marketing analytics solution to Australia.

Origami Logic is a marketing analytics solution aimed at giving marketing teams a transparent and complete view of their marketing performance – from video to social, TV to mobile,search to CRM – and real-time insights into what is working and what isn’t.

The Origami platform is tailored to match a business’s characteristics, KPIs and measurement requirements. Using artificial intelligence(AI) and automated processes to track and evaluate marketing, performance, Origami aggregates and normalises all types of marketing performance data and generates actionable insights.

TripleLift launches ContentDial

TripleLift has debuted a scalable, programmatic branded content solution, ContentDial.

ContentDial informs and scales data-based content strategies for brands and advertisers who are working with multiple publishing partners across a variety of owned and operated sites, as well as social pages, by leveraging real-time data and technology.

Since December 2017, marketers from financial technology company, Stash, have used ContentDial in a beta period to promote its apps targeting millennials across publishers, The Daily Dot and Thought Catalog. 

TripleLift's ContentDial solution created customised content that fit each publisher's respective voice, while also providing consolidated reporting that allowed Stash to analyse and change its campaign in real-time.

Twilio establishes presence in Australia and appoints new regional director

Twilio has established a presence in Australia and appointed former Oracle and Symantec executive, Richard Watson, as its first regional country director locally.

The Australian office marks Twilio’s 11th international office outside of the US and will create jobs in sales, customer success, service and support, in Sydney and Melbourne. Richard brings 20 years’ of sales leadership experience to his role as country director.

Twilio targets developers and businesses and helps with building customer engagement into their business applications using APIs for voice, messaging and video.

“This move builds on our existing customer and developer momentum in Australia, and lays the foundation for building a significant long-term business in Australia and across the APAC Region. Richard will lead a broad effort to grow our Australia team, drive momentum, and build customer relationships," said George Hu, chief operating officer at Twilio.

"We believe we're only at the beginning of this incredible journey and we can't wait to see how our customers use Twilio to engage their consumers in a whole new way."

Former Dimension Data CEO tips $1 million into emerging social networking platform 

Gather Online has announced former Dimension Data chief executive, Brett Dawson, will be joining its board of directors as chairman after the local business leader invested $1 million to support the company’s planned international expansion. 

Based in Sydney, Gather Online has developed an online communication service that allows users to achieve engagement with communities of like-minded people. The service offers time-limited access to discussions on a wide variety of topics from careers and business to travel and health. 

“Gather Online enables people to shift from passively consuming content, as is often the case with existing social networks, to connecting with like-minded individuals and having meaningful conversations,” said founder and chief executive, David Price. 

“It fills a real gap for engagement in the current social media landscape, in that you only connect to content you are interested in.” 

The investment made by Dawson would support the company’s expansion plans.

Shareholder sues Mulesoft

According to reports, a MuleSoft shareholder is suing the business, alleging it took a low offer when it was acquired by Salesforce.

The complaint, submitted in a US district court, accuses MuleSoft and Salesforce, along with some MuleSoft executives, of violating American securities law by pushing through a merger that does not give MuleSoft shareholders fair value. Salesforce and MuleSoft entered into an agreement for Salesforce to acquire the application management vendor for approximately US$6.5 billion last month.

The acquisition aims to accelerate digital transformation, enabling organisations to unlock data across legacy systems, cloud apps and devices to make smarter, faster decisions and create highly differentiated, connected customer experiences.

Under the terms of the deal, Salesforce is set to pay out a total of US$6.5 billion to acquire MuleSoft's outstanding shares at $36 per and issue MuleSoft stakeholders .0711 shares in Salesforce stock for each share owned.

Fullscreen acquires Reelio

Fullscreen has acquired Reelio, an influencer marketing platform that uses data-driven technology to help brands, agencies, and publishers effectively reach Millennial and Gen Z audiences on digital platforms.

It is hoped the acquisition will assist Fullscreen to strengthen its existing influencer marketing capabilities, and in developing a complete solution for the future of brand marketing.

Reelio’s technology offers data-driven insights to match brands and influencers, complementing what Fullscreen has already built. The combination of algorithm-led optimisation and platform automation with service aims to make the influencer marketing process efficient, scalable, quality-driven, and consistently measurable.

PFL receives investment

PFL received a $25 million investment from Goldman Sachs Growth Equity, a branch of the Merchant Banking Division at Goldman Sachs Group.

The funding will be used for research and development, product innovation and sales team growth for PFL’s Tactile Marketing Automation platform.

The TMA platform aims to help marketers design and automate the delivery process for personalised direct mail. It is positioned to integrate into marketing automation platforms such as Marketo, Oracle Marketing Cloud, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and Salesforce CRM.

Mark Midle and John Giannuzzi of Goldman Sachs Growth Equity will also join PFL’s board of directors.

Bonzai launches PhotoSphere

Bonzai has taken the wrappers off a new 360-degree immersive capability, PhotoSphere, within its creative advertising platform.

The new functionality is designed to enabler brands in Australia to offer a more immersive ad experience to increase engagement. PhotoSphere aims to do this by helping create 360-degree product photographs, which can be taken with a smartphone or DSLR camera, and uploaded to the creative and viewed in every direction.

“A static photo on a creative isn’t really interactive and it really doesn’t show your product from all possible angles. It doesn’t compete with holding a product in your hands,” said Bonzai co-founder and chief product officer, Sameer Shah.

SAP Completes Acquisition of Callidus Software

SAP SE announced it has completed its acquisition of Callidus Software, a business known for its lead to money applications, including sales performance management, and configure-price-quote (CPQ).

These applications, marketed under the brand CallidusCloud, will provide SAP and its customers a differentiated, cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) solution. SAP plans to consolidate CallidusCloud product assets within the SAP Hybris cloud portfolio, which is part of SAP's Cloud Business Group.

Each outstanding share of Callidus Software Inc. common stock has been converted into the right to receive US$36 per share in cash. Callidus Software Inc. has notified the NASDAQ Stock Market of the completion of the acquisition and expects trading of its common stock to be suspended pending delisting.

For fiscal year 2017, CallidusCloud has reported revenue of US$253.1 million, with subscription revenue of US$198.2 million growing at 31 per cent.

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