CMO's top 10 martech stories for the week - 28 February 2019

All the latest martech and adtech news this week from Outbrain, Engagio, RollWorks, Zoho, Delacon, Domo, Freshworks, 90 Seconds, PubMatic, Lotame and Lytics.

Outbrain acquires Ligatus

Native advertising vendor, Outbrain has entered an agreement to acquire Ligatus, a fully owned subsidiary of Gruner + Jahr, which is a Bertelsmann group company, in a stock deal.

Ligatus is a European-based native advertising solution provider with headquarters in Cologne, Germany and offices in Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Belgium and Netherlands. Its solutions aim to bring advertisers and publishers together through high-impact, non-intrusive native ad placements, leveraging a mobile-first native ad solution for marketers to build awareness and engagement with the right audiences.

With the addition of the Ligatus premium publisher network, Outbrain said it will expand and strengthen its position in Europe with over 1400 premium publishers, including STERN, RTL and Femme Actuelle.

The acquisition is subject to certain regulatory and other approvals and is expected to close by the second quarter of 2019. Financial terms were not dislosed.

Engagio launches engagement-based attribution capability

Account-based marketing (ABM) vendor, Engagio, has taken the wrappers off Engagement Minute Attribution for Dash, the company’s account based attribution solution.

Dash claims to be the first attribution offering that analyses the impact of both marketing and sales activity together. Engagio uses the concept of time spent (minutes) to illustrate if an account is engaged and ready to move to the next stage. The software enables B2B marketers to understand the behaviour of multiple people within an account, then visualises activity at an account level.

The aim is to allow marketers to get more granular and examine the key activities that drive engagement by team. It is not about assigning credit, rather revenue teams can optimise the types of joint programs and initiatives they execute together to more effectively close deals or expand further into the account.

Engagio’s new attribution capabilities allow marketers to: Align journey analytics and attribution with the activities that drive engagement at the account level, consider and compare the relative impact of all touches, move beyond campaign tracking to understand the impact of the entire revenue team, and measure business outcomes along the entire buyer’s journey, pre and post-purchase.

Zoho Corporation launches in Australia

Global CRM player, Zoho, has continued its international expansion by announcing its launch in Australia.

Zoho, which comprises three technology businesses, is positioning itself to compete directly with the likes of Salesforce, Google and Microsoft and cites its speed of deployment and pricing structure -  which enables even the smallest of businesses to digitise their operations for as little as $1 a day - as key competitive differentiators.

Zoho is looking to accelerate its growth in the region with investment in a local team, offices in Byron Bay, NSW, and building additional infrastructure. The company in this region will be led by Timothy Kasbe, who is appointed as Managing Director for A/NZ and Global Large Enterprise.

Zoho is already used by thousands of customers in Australia to help digitise and expand small, medium and multinational enterprises.

Lytics raises US$35 million

Lytics, a customer data platform (CDP) for marketers, announced the closing of a US$35 million Series C investment round.

The round was led by JMI Equity, a growth equity firm focused on investing in leading software companies, with participation from current investors Comcast Ventures, Two Sigma Ventures, Rembrandt Venture Partners and Voyager Capital. 

This investment will enable Lytics to scale and meet exploding demand for a CDP that unifies customer data, delivers actionable insights, and orchestrates and optimises cross-channel campaigns.

The company will add more connectivity into the tools marketers use most and deliver more reporting options to help customers measure success. Lytics will also mature its deployment methodology, accelerating its customers’ ability to achieve a quick time to value and measurable results.

Delacon to integrate call analytics data into Domo 

Call analytics provider, Delacon, and cloud-based operating system provider, Domo, have joined forces with the aim of making it easier for Delacon’s clients to access its call and speech analytics data via the Domo platform.

The new partnership sees Delacon data appearing alongside other marketing data through a new connector for the Domo platform. The companies said they hoped customers could realise more value from their marketing data through real-time, actionable insights. 

Domo currently has more than 600 data connectors available for users to bring in data from a variety of platforms. The integration with Domo is Delacon’s latest announcement to make data easily accessible to its clients, with the aim to give marketers increased visibility as to performance of their campaigns.

Freshworks introduces Omniroute

Customer engagement software vendor, Freshworks, has unveiled Omniroute, a new load balancing engine for multi-channel customer inquiries.

Built into Freshdesk, the patent-pending technology aims to provide customer service agents with a unified view of customer inquiries regardless of channel and helps them respond to those inquiries more efficiently.

With Omniroute, businesses with multi-skilled support agents can now automatically assign customer queries to agents with available bandwidth.

90 Seconds closes US$20 million funding round

90 Seconds, a global video creation platform, has raised US$20 million in a Series B funding round from new and existing investors including SIG, Airtree Ventures, Sequoia India, Qualgro Venture Capital, Atami Capital, and Right Click Capital.

The funds will be used to increase automation and intelligence to personalise brands’ experience on the platform in order to scale video creation. It will also allow 90 Seconds to expand and enhance its creator network to provide brands greater global coverage across major regions and key remote locations.

90 Seconds aims to revolutionise the way video production is managed. Much of the company’s success is attributed to its end-to-end suite of collaboration tools, which helps brands connect and track offline shoots back to an automated online workflow. Additionally, 90 Seconds offers brands the ability to create quality video anywhere, seamlessly through an ecosystem of creators around the world.

Since its Series A funding in 2016, 90 Seconds has grown by more than 400 per cent and expanded its reach to over 160 countries and 900 cities. The company has worked with over 3000 brands including HP, Google, DBS, Jaguar, Moët Hennessy, American Airlines, Kraft, McDonald’s, PayPal, Zalora, Accenture, Primark and Amazon.

RollWorks launches Identification Solution

RollWorks, a division of AdRoll Group, has launched its Identification Solution. This new addition to its account-based platform enables marketers to home their ideal customer profile (ICP), create and prioritise a target account list, and identify key buyers and buying committees within target companies.

The RollWorks Identification Solution can surface insights and targets from a B2B database of 320 million verified business contacts across 18 million accounts, bolstered by AdRoll Group’s recent acquisition of Growlabs in November 2018. Firmographic and technographic data is continually updated to ensure accuracy and reach when moving to cross-channel execution.

PubMatic launches OpenBid

PubMatic has launched OpenBid, a programmatic-first solution that provides app publishers and developers with a gateway to programmatic demand and brand ad budgets. 

PubMatic’s OpenBid offers mobile app developers the full potential of the growing programmatic opportunity. PubMatic leveraged its strategic relationships with over 200 demand sources – including preferred, supply path optimisation (SPO) deals – to provide app developers with what it claims is unparalleled access to programmatic demand.

The company’s expertise in header bidding innovation and programmatic direct deal models delivers the efficiency and performance of unified auctions in a single software development kit. 

Lotame launches the Syndicate online marketplace

Lotame has debuted Syndicate online marketplace, a new visual marketplace aiming to provide buyers with a transparent way to research and vet some of the sellers of second-party data on Lotame Syndicate that have opted-in to showcase their data. 

Participating global sellers include 180byTwo, AD3+ (Neuron), Advance Local, Connected Interactive, DataXpand, Gulf News, Hexagon, Lonely Planet, MMPWW, Phunware, VerticalScope, Vibrant Media, Viglinks, and Zoopla.

“Second-party data offers the transparency that marketers demand today in a post-GDPR world,” said chief strategy officer at Lotame, Jason Downie. “And we’re seeing publishers take advantage of that. Challenged to compete against the duopoly, publishers are monetising their first-party data by reselling it on a one-to-one basis.

"The benefits of second-party data are clearly resonating with marketers and we expect this number to only increase this year.”

Launched in 2016, Lotame Syndicate provides a peer-to-peer environment for data owners and buyers to directly discover and size target audiences.

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