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Posts Tagged ‘acquisition’

Tesco breaks into social with Bzzagent acquisition – via Dunnhumby

May 24th, 2011

Tesco has broken into the Social space with the acquisition of Bzzagent for $60 million, or at least Dunnhumby, owned by Tesco, has done the deal.

If you’re not familiar with Dunnhumby, it was acquired by Tesco not so long ago , and this isn’t the first acquisition by Dunnhumby. It purchased KSS Retail, a US price-modelling company, in early 2010 which offers a clue to what it is doing.

So, far from being a new diversification into a different market, which Tesco is well known for, this acquisition is in fact to strengthen Tesco’s loyalty and consumer comms/research and product marketing.

After all, Dunnhumby was the power behind the Tesco loyalty card which revolutionised retail in the 90s, and more precisely customer data, and has continued to keep Tesco’s grip on UK retail strong and forward-facing.

The trend of purchasing U.S. organisations is likely to be a planned strategy as Tesco has had its sights trained firmly on the U.S market for some time, and current stores on the other side of the Atlantic are doing well in a tough climate.

Bzzagent describes itself as a word of mouth agent that uses 800,000 BzzAgents (advocates), who are basically people that compete to be first in line to try free or discounted products to build awareness, make recommendations, talk about brands and ultimately drive sales.

By combining the data wealth of Dunnhumby, with the social intelligence and reach of Bzzagent, Tesco is clearly making a move for the social consumer and it seems to be well ahead of its competitors in this endeavour. Combining data with social knowledge and experience is a powerful advantage for Tesco, and this could be money well spent if it can make significant returns from social conversation and product marketing and sales.

For further information on Bzzagent and the deal, the following articles will be useful:
TechCrunch
AdWeek
The Drum

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Google and Twitter – the rumour mill grinds on

April 8th, 2009

The web’s soothsayers have been talking about Google acquiring Twitter for some time, but last week, the rumours seemed to have a bit more substance thanks to stories of a Google/Twitter deal and potential acquisition talks that started on TechCrunch and spread rapidly, as you would expect.

The original TechCrunch story has been updated three times, including an official denial from Twitter on Friday, and further discussion from various sources that agree or disagree that acquisition talks are going ahead.

What most people seem to agree on is:

1. Google wants a deal, but initially focused on real-time feed of Twitter updates to speed indexing, as it currently has to index each Twitter user periodically to look for updates. This is apparently the main point of the current discussions, and certainly makes sense for Google at least when you consider global visits to Twitter approached 10 million in February, up 700% from the same time last year, according to comScore, and this figure is only going to keep growing, which leaves Google with a big issue.

2. Twitter’s current valuation is $250 million following the recent round of funding

3. Twitter values itself at much more, some sources say closer to $1 billion at least

4. Twitter founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone have already sold Blogger to Google five years ago

So why would Google want Twitter? Well I think this quote from Jeff Mann of Gartner Research that appeared in Forbes sums it up well: “Twitter’s value is in its content, growing by 6 million tweets per day. Twitter is attractive because it has built a service that attracts this much volume, creating a constantly growing, twitching, seething real-time source of comments, news and opinions.”

Beyond that, Twitter is the real-time search engine for breaking news and comment, it’s also not a bad reputation engine and Google undoubtedly wants a piece of this, as mentioned in my post in March.

Why would Twitter want to work with Google? Well, beyond having done it before, Twitter has so much potential as a revenue generating platform, but seems to be having trouble in realising this potential. Could Google be the answer to get the business model moving?

Whatever the eventual result, i think it’s going to take longer than a week to resolve, and since the story first broke last week there has been much discussion, an example of which can be seen in this Paid Content article, but little in the way of movement. As we know, these things don’t tend to move quickly.

So, do i think Twitter will be acquired? Probably, but probably not this year until they have developed a few more valuable services, proved revenue generation and got that all important valuation up.

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When Yahoo! is said and done

February 14th, 2008

I’ve stayed off the subject for long enough. There have been a few times when I wanted to add my two penneth into the Yahoo! debate, and then thought better of it as there was always going to be so much more to come. But today is the day – you lucky, lucky people.

It’s been a busy week in the world of Yahoo!, and there’s bound to be more following the recent board meeting. Here’s a quick recap assuming everyone knows the Microsoft bid was rejected last week. Jerry Yang, co-founder and chief executive, has spoken of his feeling that Microsoft’s bid ‘substantially’ undervalues the company. The News Corp share option, which has gained a load of coverage today but has been discussed for a few days, is looking more attractive if Yahoo! want to save face, or at least bump up the price. And all this after the Yahoo! workforce was trimmed by a 1000, undoubtedly in preparation for a sale. Oh and the purchase of Maven also went through to strengthen Yahoo!’s online advertising offering, focused specifically on video. And breathe…

So where does that leave the current state of play? Well on the sidelines we have Google and AOL, but they appear to be remaining quiet so for the moment it’s a straight shootout between Microsoft and News Corp. Who will the winner be? Well the one that wants it most. Sounds obvious, but Microsoft need Yahoo! in my opinion. It is already too far behind Google in delivering the web for consumers, so missing out on this purchase may be a step too far.

It also very much depends on whether Yahoo! want out or not, in which case News Corp is more attractive, but to be honest I don’t think this will ultimately be Yahoo!’s choice.

So when it’s all said and done, what will Yahoo! be? Unfortunately I think it will be a fond memory for some and part of a wider offering for the next generation.

Full details on the BBC, TechCrunch and NY Times

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