Twitter

Twitter this week abandoned all plans of becoming an ecosystem with the sale of its suite of developer products, including its developer suite Fabric.

That's the conclusion from Richard Windsor, an analyst at Edison Investment Research, who said the sale makes Twitter solely dependent on engagement around media consumption.

“The sale of Fabric collapses Twitter’s horizons," Windsor told CMSWire. At best, he predicts, Twitter will see revenues of $3.9 billion and grow 6 to 8 percent in the long-term. Twitter's next earning report is scheduled for Feb. 7.

Cambridge, Mass.-based Fabric, which includes the crash reporting service Crashlytics, lets developers track and analyze mobile app performance and crashes, and is installed in more than a million apps. Twitter acquired Crashlytics in 2013 in an all-stock deal estimated to be worth about $300 million.

Terms of the deal, jointly announced by Twitter and Google Wednesday, were not disclosed.

Twitter wanted developers to use Fabric to create other services that could be tightly linked to Twitter, Windsor said. The sale shows that plan has been abandoned in favor of increased media consumption, such as live-casting NFL games.

"The response to the live streaming over Twitter has been quite good ... but there is a very long way to go," Windsor said.

Fabric executives seem enthused about the change in ownership. In a blog post, Rich Paret, VP of engineering and GM of Fabric, said the Fabric team will join Google’s Developer Products Group, working with the Firebase team. Since launching in 2014, he added, Fabric has grown to reach 2.5 billion active mobile devices, and its Crashlytics and Answers kits were recognized for app stability and analytics.

"When we met the team at Google we quickly realized that our missions are the same: helping mobile teams build better apps, understand their users and grow their businesses," Paret said. "Fabric and Firebase operate mobile platforms with unique strengths in the market today."

In other technology news ...

Technology Acquisitions

Several companies kicked off the new year by making strategic acquisitions and investments.

Oracle Buys Apiary

Oracle has signed an agreement to acquire Apiary, a hosted suite of tools that help companies build, test and monitor web application programming interfaces (APIs)
Apiary's APIFlow is designed to foster the API creation lifecycle, including design, governance, testing and documentation, while supporting API Blueprint and OpenAPI industry standards.

“Oracle’s API Integration Cloud enables companies to secure, consume, monetize, and analyze APIs,” said Amit Zavery, senior vice president for integration cloud at Oracle, in a press release.

API's are big business, as evidenced by Google's $625 million acquisition of Apigee last September.

Oracle already has an API Integration Cloud. But the acquisition gives Oracle advanced capabilities to design and govern APIs, Zavery said.

Two Enterprise Collaboration Buys

Enterprise collaboration remains a hot acquisition space with as two new deals emerged this week. Terms were not disclosed.

  1. Higher Logic, provider of a cloud-based community platform, acquired Socious, a community software company that serves the non-profit and B2B markets. In September, Higher Logic closed a $55 million investment from JMI Equity, a growth equity firm. The company was recently named a leader in IDC's inaugural report on online communities. The combined company will support more than 270,000 communities totaling more than 37 million community members.
  2. Private equity firm Thoma Bravo plans to acquire Planview from Insight Venture Partners. Planview, which offers project collaboration and portfolio management, recently acquired enterprise management companies Innotas, Troux and Projectplace.
    Planview operates in the work and resource management (WRM) category. “We see WRM as a mainstream opportunity that leverages our expertise in project portfolio management (PPM), collaborative work management (CWM) and enterprise architecture (EA), but brings them together in a way that addresses the broader strategy-to-execution challenge organizations have, from teams to the enterprise," Greg Gilmore, CEO of Planview, said in a statement.

HPE to Acquire SimpliVity for $650M

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) announced a definitive agreement to acquire SimpliVity, which provides software-defined, hyperconverged infrastructure. HPE officials said the acquisition brings together the company's infrastructure, automation and cloud management software with SimpliVity’s software-defined data management platform.

“This transaction expands HPE’s software-defined capability and fits squarely within our strategy to make hybrid IT simple for customers,” Meg Whitman, president and CEO of HPE, said in a statement.

Privately held SimpliVity was founded in 2009. Headquartered in Westborough, Mass., the company focuses on enterprise customers who require on-premises technology infrastructure.

The combined HPE and SimpliVity portfolio will offer enterprise data services across hyperconverged, 3PAR storage, composable infrastructure and multi-cloud offerings.

Tech Funding

Proof Raises $2.4M

Paradise Valley, Az.-based Proof, a provider of analytics that computes the time-to-impact and business value of marketing and communications, raised $2.4 million in seed funding from corporate, agency and angel investors. The amount is a direct investment, coupled with a convertible loan.

Proof founders Mark Stouse and Kyle Brantley, whose combined experience includes HP, Honeywell and BMC Software, developed a correlation engine that combines a logic framework with algorithms. It is intended to reveal the cause-and-effect of relationships between the different parts of marketing as well as between marketing and other parts of a business, like sales.

Proof has a broad base of shareholders, including The Scibetta Fund, Vaulting Ventures, High West Venture Partners, Lewis Family Enterprises, LDWW Group, KRB Ventures, Webonise Labs, and current and former senior business leaders from organizations such as Accenture, BMC Software, Concur Technologies, Edelman, Hill & Knowlton, Honeywell, HP, IBM, Intellectual Ventures, Microsoft, Oracle, ServiceNow, Starbucks and WE Communications.

Proof execs plan to use the money to drive continuous development and improvement of the platform, as well as expand to meet increasing demand since the official launch last month.

Perfect Sense Nets $22M

Reston, Va.-based Perfect Sense, the company behind the enterprise digital application development platform Brightspot, closed a $22 million round of funding from Carrick Capital Partners.

Perfect Sense helps businesses build and deliver digital experiences using the Brightspot product line, which integrates with existing systems and data sources, while providing editorial tools.

Brightspot features search, the ability to manage and distribute content across multiple sites and channels, and built-in analytics. The product lineup for Perfect Sense features search, the ability to personalize the user experience, built-in analytics and integration with existing enterprise systems.

Marc McMorris, co-founder and managing director of Carrick Capital Partners, said the Perfect Sense team has created "a unique set of solutions to a growing business problem: How can I transform my business and overcome the limitations of fragmented systems for managing the delivery of content to customers anywhere, anytime and on any device?"

McMorris will be involved as a member of the Perfect Sense board of directors.

OrderGroove Raises $20M

New York City-based OrderGroove, a startup that allows brands to create subscription and membership commerce, closed a $20 million Series C round of funding from National Securities, whose portfolio includes Lyft, Palantir and Coursera.

The round brings OrderGroove’s total funding to $37 million, including investments from Lerer Hippeau Ventures, SWaN & Legend Ventures, Western Technology Investment, Silicon Valley Bank, FYRFLY Ventures and Scott Booth. Booth is the founder of Lead Edge Capital, an early investor in Alibaba and a recent appointee to OrderGroove’s Board of Directors.

The company plans to use the funding to enhance its omnichannel Subscription Enablement Platform and drive hiring in product innovation, data science, sales and client success.

Salsify Closes $30M Series C Round

Boston-based Salsify, a product content management (PCM) platform for distributed commerce, closed a $30 million Series C round. Led by Underscore.VC, with continued participation from existing investors Venrock, Matrix Partners and North Bridge, it brings the company's total funding to date to $54.6 million.

Salsify plans to hire 80 new positions in 2017. That would bring it to about 200 employees.

Salsify's product content management platform helps brands deliver complete, accurate and compelling product content to digital shoppers.

New Hires

Accenture Interactive Hires Tammy Soares

Accenture Interactive has hired Tammy Soares as managing director to lead Accenture Interactive’s West region in North America. In her new role, she will will be responsible for overseeing Accenture Interactive’s business in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. Based in San Francisco, she will focus on driving growth, bringing innovation to clients and strengthening the digital agency’s impact in the region.

Soares has more than 20 years experience in digital marketing. Most recently, she served as president and CEO of Publicis Groupe’s Rosetta. Since joining Rosetta in 2008, Soares helped accelerate the digital agency’s growth and positioning it as a global leader in customer engagement.

Apttus Hires Chief People Officer

San Mateo, Calif.-based quote-to-cash technology provider Apttus hired technology industry veteran Don Robertson as its chief people officer.

Robertson will oversee hiring, talent development and human resources activities. Robertson will report to Apttus CEO Kirk Krappe.

Robertson formerly worked at TrueCar and Hewlett Packard, most recently as senior vice president of human resources for enterprise services. He has more than three decades of experience in human resources, business and general management roles, and has worked in finance positions for companies including GE Capital Corp., the Stanford Research Institute and The Clorox Co.

MaritzCX Teams With Temkin

Salt Lake City-based customer experience provider MaritzCX is partnering with the Temkin Group to provide Temkin Ratings within the MaritzCX Platform. MaritzCX customers will now have access to survey templates and be able to compare their Temkin Ratings index score against other companies.

The MaritzCX Platform will provide dashboards that allow users to compare data side by side for a direct comparison.

Temkin Ratings evaluate organizations based on feedback collected over the past six years using a large-scale survey of more than 10,000 US consumers across 20 industries.

Bynder Joins Salesforce Partners

Boston digital asset management solution Bynder has joined the Salesforce Partner Program in support of Salesforce Commerce Cloud.

Commerce Cloud enables brands to provide personalized experiences for shoppers that span web, mobile, social and in-store. The Bynder Salesforce Commerce Cloud cartridge enables customers to use Bynder as a single content source to access digital assets in the Salesforce Commerce Cloud environment.

In related news, Salesforce this week opened a new office in Bellevue, Wash., which will house one of the company's largest engineering and innovation hubs. In the coming months, Salesforce plans to double its workforce in Bellevue to nearly 500.