Companies in social media analysis changed ownership 20 times in 2016, down from 32 deals in 2015. Despite the slower pace, the logic underlying acquisitions continues from last year, with the majority representing portfolio plays, as companies extend their technology and services capabilities. The serial acquirers slowed down in 2016, while several smaller companies combined forces to go after larger markets.
Here's a recap of the year's deals. As always, you can find the latest deals and a record of past deals in the space at SMA's acquisitions scorecard.
Whether it's described as a merger or an acquisition, some combinations represent companies teaming up to take on the world. Augure (which earlier rolled up iMente, Adequate Systems and Wisemetrics) merged with Fashion GPS to form Launchmetrics and pursue fashion and other high-end, global brands.
M-Brain extended its geographic reach and team with Opoint, two Nordic companies going everywhere. Sentimonitor and Vortio teamed up to go global from their base in Brazil. Wayin and EngageSciences combined their strengths in social media intelligence, digital campaigns and customer engagement.
Meanwhile, straight-up consolidation continued as Tailwind bought and shuttered PinAlerts, continuing its pattern of rolling up Pinterest specialists.
The typical acquisition has been, for years, the larger company picking up a smaller company for a product or technology. After a busy 2015, Sprinklr made just one purchase in 2016, adding influencer marketing tools of Little Bird. Hootsuite went mobile with Sales Prodigy, its first acquisition since 2014. Meltwater got technology and talent in Encore Alert.
CARMA added CustomScoop to its client toolbox. Shapiro+Raj chose MutualMind. LRW picked up MotiveQuest as a step toward integrating listening with other research methods. Anexinet added unstructured data analysis to its diversified business technology portfolio with ListenLogic. Each of these continues to operate with the addition of parent-company branding.
2016 saw two deals in a less common category, as companies adjusted their priorities and traded entire businesses. Innodata bought PR Newswire's Agility media-intelligence business, a result of Cision's late-2015 deal to acquire PRN. Notified bought the media monitoring business from Twintip Insights as the latter refocused on its dashboard product.
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