SDL (news, site) adds online retailing to its list of skills via the acquisition of European eCommerce company Fredhopper.

Hop to the Shops

Dutch company Fredhopper provides the power behind over 100 UK and European brands; including Clarks Shoes, B&Q DIY stores and up-market supermarket Waitrose. This track record has made Fredhopper a natural target and SDL has stepped in to buy it, to get its hands on the company's extensive eCommerce features and expertise including profiling, personalization and search.

The company will be integrated into SDL as the eCommerce Technologies group, headed up by Fredhoppers current management. Joining with SDL allows Fredhopper to offer its wares on a global stage, while SDL can offer another feature to round out its Web CMS offering -- SDL Tridion.

Learning Opportunities

Follow the Plot

SDL has grown big through its translation software and moved into online marketing services. It is using its good results and power in a depressed market to expand its offering and transform itself into an all-rounded global information management company. Of course, it will take some time to get all of these technologies working together, so buyers may want to hold off before investing.

Fredhopper has been around since 2000 and claims to handle €5 billion (US$ 7 billion) in revenue for its clients through its Java-powered systems. SDL is getting ever bigger in the WCM and marketing areas, expanding to new territories and in new directions, making it a company to keep an eye on in 2010.