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Ars Logica Picks WCM Leaders, Act-On Names New CEO, More News

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Catch up on customer experience software news in this wrap up. In this edition: web content management leaders, Taplytics release and more

Boston-based research and advisory firm Ars Logica has named its top web content management (WCM) platforms in its Compass Guide report. The Compass Guide series benchmarks the top 15 WCM providers, or the “most significant in the market,” according to company founder Tony White.

Ars Logica researchers identified these leaders after questioning vendors, interviewing customers, monitoring implementations and testing products. They also asked “how is the technology” and “how — and how well — is technology exposed to both business and users and other technology platforms?”

It came up with a grid:

  • Market leaders: SDL, Adobe, Sitecore, OpenText, GX, Acquia, Episerver
  • Strong performers: BloomReach, Kentico, Magnolia, Jahia
  • Market challengers: Ingeniux
  • Niche players: e-Spirit, CoreMedia, eZ Systems

Also in the world of customer experience software ...

Act-On Hires New CEO

Portland, Ore.-based marketing automation provider Act-On has named Kate Johnson its new CEO. Johnson replaces outgoing CEO Andy MacMillan, who was named CEO in October 2015. Johnson has served as Act-On’s CFO for the past three years. Act-On also promoted Ryan Brady, formerly VP of finance and business operations, to CFO. 

“Kate has been fundamental to the growth and day-to-day operations of Act-On over the past three years,” Diane Fraiman, Voyager Capital Partner and Act-On board member and investor, said in a statement.

Act-On officials also announced the company will consolidate its North American operations in its Portland headquarters. The company plans to expand its Portland presence, hiring up to 50 new employees in the first half of this year, primarily in its engineering and customer service organizations. “We see a window of opportunity in the marketplace, driven by the fact that marketers need more than just automation,” Johnson said. “We have determined that we need an immediate, intense focus on delivering product innovation to take advantage of it.” 

Act-On’s Northern California facilities in Roseville and San Mateo will close as a result, with some employees offered relocation to Portland. 

Act-On also announced this week that former SVP of business development and general counsel Bill Pierznik will be the new chief operating officer. Act-On has also named Jennifer Schoof to the position of general counsel, replacing Pierznik in that position.

Taplytics Expands Experience Cloud

Toronto-based mobile development and optimization platform provider Taplytics has launched its Taplytics Experience Cloud. The release brings together the following solutions:

  • Engagement Platform: Develop pathways that guide customers through contextually relevant journeys.
  • Launch Control: Roll out features incrementally.
  • Data Warehouse: Host all customer data in one place. Allows Dexter, Taplytics artificial intelligence "smart assistant," to provide analysis.
  • Analytics: Users can build custom analytics and dashboards.
  • Experimentation Engine: Users can iterate and experiment.

The release marks the company's expansion beyond mobile into the web, as well as the debut of Dexter, an artifical intelligence-based smart assistant created to offer optimization suggestions to end users. 

GroundTruth Appoints New CMO 

New York City-based location technology vendor GroundTruth has announced the appointment of Eric Hadley as its new chief marketing officer and Jeff Hackett as its new senior vice president of North America Sales.

Hadley is a 15-year veteran of Microsoft. Most recently, he served as president of creative agency Mission. Hadley replaces former CMO Monica Ho.

Previously with AdColony and comScore, Inc., Hackett will drive the sales organization’s growth across agencies and brand categories, including retail, restaurant, auto and CPG. 

Learning Opportunities

Dentsu Aegis Network Acquires HelloWorld

London-based Dentsu Aegis Network announced it acquired Detroit-based HelloWorld, a digital marketing solutions provider focused on promotion and loyalty solutions. The business will be rebranded “HelloWorld, a Merkle Company.”

HelloWorld has operated at the intersection of data, technology and marketing strategy, according to company officials. It creates promotional and gamified campaigns, loyalty programs and insights-driven communications.

Part of Dentsu Inc., Dentsu Aegis Network is made up of 10 global network brands. It provides services in media, digital and creative communications services. 

WP Engine Nets $250 Million

Technology investor Silver Lake has invested $250 million into WP Engine, which offers what it calls a WordPress Digital Experience Platform.

WP Engine also announced more than $100 million in annual recurring revenue with over 75,000 customers globally, up 30 percent year-over-year. Greg Mondre, managing partner of Silver Lake, and Lee Wittlinger and Mark Gillett, managing directors of Silver Lake, will join WP Engine’s Board of Directors.

Founded in 2010, WP Engine provides digital solutions to manage websites. The company’s Digital Experience Platform is a software and services solution developed on the WordPress content management system. 

ABM Provider Terminus Acquires BrightFunnel

Atlanta-based Terminus, providers of an account-based marketing (ABM) platform, has acquired B2B marketing analytics and attribution provider BrightFunnel. BrightFunnel brings 40 new employees to Terminus, who will be based in the BrightFunnel office in San Francisco.

“Our customers want to understand the influence of campaigns throughout the buyer’s journey, create a 360-degree view of engagement that supports one revenue team, and close the loop on measuring account-based marketing and advertising,” Eric Spett, CEO and co-founder of Terminus, said in a statement about the acquisition.

Terminus’ ABM platform offers ABM, web engagement and reporting on target account progression.

BrightFunnel offers B2B analytics, including AI-powered multi-touch attribution, account-based measurement and revenue funnel analytics.