NetSuite buys cloud-based email marketing vendor

Cloud-based financials, enterprise resource planning and omnichannel commerce vendor NetSuite is burnishing its marketing platform with the $200 million acquisition of Bronto Software.

NetSuite announced a definitive agreement on Thursday to acquire Bronto, a privately-held cloud-based commerce marketing company, in a cash and equity deal worth about $200 million. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter. Bronto provides cloud-based email marketing services through its commerce marketing automation platform to brands such as Armani Exchange, Timex and Trek Bikes.

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Bronto’s solution will complement NetSuite’s SuiteCommerce platform, a cloud-based omnichannel B2B and B2C commerce platform used by more than 3,000 brands to drive their commerce strategies across point-of-sale, ecommerce and call centre. With NetSuite’s other solutions, SuiteCommerce also offers a complete order view from order to inventory management with international currency and tax support, on one platform.

“This combination, for the first time ever, ties a rich marketing automation system with a cloud-based omnichannel commerce platform. The capabilities this solution will deliver are transformational,” said Zach Nelson, NetSuite CEO, in a statement. “Just as customers demand seamless cross-channel shopping experiences, they increasingly expect companies to communicate consistently through all of their digital experiences – on site, at stores, in email or through social or mobile. By combining the two companies’ offerings and technology, we can help merchants deliver relevant and consistent digital commerce experiences throughout the customer journey.”

According to the vendors, the cloud is blurring the line between commerce and marketing, with consumers constantly interacting with brands across email, mobile, social and web channels. Companies are having to unify their commerce systems so consumers can be offered a consistent experience across whatever channel they choose to use.

“Today’s consumers expect brands to know them across every channel and marketing touchpoint,” said Joe Colopy, Bronto Software CEO, in a statement. “Providing that type of experience demands a unified approach to digital engagement, whether driving transactions online or offline or engaging with them through website, email, mobile or social. We’re thrilled to bring Bronto’s industry leading commerce marketing capabilities to NetSuite’s commerce solutions. This will help merchants to better engage with their customers, drive repeat purchases and build lifelong loyalty.”

A born in the cloud solution, Bronto’s tools for marketers include messaging from email and SMS to social, multi-step automation for campaigns and response to customer actions, list management and segmentation, and an omnichannel view bridging offline and online.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras is a technology journalist with IT World Canada and a member of the IT Business team. He began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada and the channel for Computer Dealer News. His writing has also appeared in the Vancouver Sun & the Ottawa Citizen.

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