Sitecore has started spending some of that huge $1.2 billion it raised last month, announcing overnight two acquisitions focused on data management and customer experience.

When it first revealed its privately raised money mountain in January (although not the sources for the loot) the company said the cash would be used to “fuel product innovation, more than double go-to-market presence, expand geographic footprint and enhance the global brand.”

The two companies it bought are;

  • Boxever, a SaaS-based Customer Data Platform (CDP) that provides decisioning and experimentation
  • Four51, which delivers modern B2B and B2C experiences for enterprise brands.

The acquisitions are expected to close before the end of March, 2021 and financial terms are not being disclosed. On completion, CEOs from both companies will take on leadership roles and Sitecore says it expects to invest and grow both Boxever’s Dublin and Four51’s Minneapolis headquarters.

According to Steve Tzikakis, CEO, Sitecore, “Our mission is to disrupt the digital experience market and these acquisitions will extend our leadership position.

Steve Tzikakis, Sitecore CEO

Sitecore’s innovative digital experience platform spanning content-to-commerce provides companies with the flexibility and agility necessary to keep pace with changing demands ensuring they seize the digital opportunity to strengthen consumer connections. ”

In a statement announcing the deals, the company said the pandemic has highlighted the need for a flexible and modern digital experience platform (DXP) to provide organisations with the agility and intelligence to keep pace with changing demands.

The rationale for the deal is that integrating Boxever’s and Four51’s technologies with Sitecore’s digital marketing solutions will provide what it calls the first modern, integrated content-to-commerce, SaaS-based DXP.

“This solution will enable businesses to deliver real-time, personalized digital experiences across every aspect of the buying cycle, increasing customer value, and loyalty, ” according to the announcement.

Sitecore says Boxever’s CDP provides advanced segmentation, real-time decisioning, and experimentation that acts as the brain within an organization’s marketing stack with a view to making every customer interaction more relevant and engaging. The new capabilities expand and enhance Sitecore’s customer intelligence and AI-driven personalization tools.

With Four51’s API-first, headless e-commerce solution, the goal is to help customers deliver engaging shopping experiences helping improve customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy. The platform complements Sitecore’s existing B2C commerce capabilities.

Tackling integrations

Organizations of all sizes across industries will benefit from the expanded capabilities, need for less upfront investment, continuous innovation and a dramatically shorter time to value, Sitecore argues.

On a company blog Tzikakis wrote, “While today marks an exciting milestone, it is worth acknowledging that enterprise CMOs and CDOs often read about consolidation in the marketing technology space with a healthy degree of skepticism.”

He said that too often businesses are promised integrations and then left waiting or disappointed, forcing them to piece together insights from a sea of disparately-connected platforms.

He said, “Some analysts even predict that a majority of marketers who invested in personalization will abandon their efforts.”

That’s a reference to research outfit Gartner which argues that buy 2025, “80 per cent of marketers who have invested in personalisation will abandon their efforts due to lack of ROI and the risk of customer data management.”

At the time Charles Golvin, senior director analyst in the Gartner for Marketers practice said, “Personal data has long been the fuel that fires marketing at every stage of the customer journey, and the drive to find new forms of fuel and devise new ways to leverage them seems to be boundless.

“However, this quest has failed to meet marketers’ ambitions and, in some cases, has backfired, as consumers both directly and indirectly reject brands’ overtures.”

Tzikakis said Sitecore can offer a better way. “It starts by building a modern architecture that is flexible, faster to implement and easy to integrate by virtue of our SaaS-based, API-first Digital Experience Platform. Our end-to-end modern SaaS content-to-commerce suite will enable customers to offer individually personalized experiences in real-time and at scale.”

Sitecore wants to enable marketers to develop content to fuel individualized personalized experiences effectively, while our commerce capabilities empower them to provide superior shopping experiences and maximize conversion, said Tzikakis.

“All of this will work in a fully integrated and seamless fashion across the modern enterprise. Ultimately, this helps brands build competitive advantage in the digital world, the importance of which has never been clearer than over the past year.”

“To be sure, it’s a difficult time for experience-minded brands. Procurement pressure, precarious brand loyalty, newly-reset consumer expectations, upended business models, and an explosion in screens and media have all been amplified in the wake of COVID-19. The result is a perfect storm for enterprises trying to deliver great customer experiences in a distracted and stressed out world.”

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