Oracle will acquire data services and technology company BlueKai for an estimated $350 to $400 million, bringing together one of the largest enterprise software companies with a market leading data management platform (DMP).
If the acquisition goes through, it would help solidify the Oracle’s previously uncertain position in the digital advertising space. It also represents another challenging shift for seven-year-old BlueKai, which originated as a buyer and seller of consumer data and pivoted to become a seller of data analytics and management technologies.
Business Insider reported a rumor of the deal over the weekend, reporting its value at $400 million. According to an AdExchanger source, a term sheet was signed roughly a month ago at $350 million -- but the transaction price could've gone up since then. Press release.
The BlueKai acquisition is the latest in a string of big-time Oracle buys intended to extend its offerings in marketing and advertising tech. In May 2012, Oracle bought social marketing solutions provider Vitrue for an estimated $300 million. Its purchase of marketing automation firm Eloqua for around $810 million in December 2012 helped the company establish a “customer experience” cloud in the B2B space. And its December 2013 purchase of email and cross-channel marketing solutions provider Responsys for $1.5 billion gave it a B2C solution, better positioning the company to compete with competing marketing stacks from Adobe and Salesforce.com. With the BlueKai buy, its collective marketing tech acquisitions will total more than $3 billion.
BlueKai gives Oracle some heavy-duty marketing and advertising assets including a data exchange and data technologies.
"I can say that the crown jewel is not just the DMP but the Mobile DMP," said Ray Wang, chairman and principal analyst at Constellation Research. "[Oracle] gains a great platform." The Mobile DMP in particular, Wang said, fills a gaping hole in Oracle's portfolio.
But analysts and industry experts have in the past questioned how effectively Oracle can execute building a marketing and advertising stack that marketers can use. On paper, the BlueKai acquisition might look good, but it remains to be seen whether Oracle effectively integrates the inherited technologies, though Wang doesn't foresee much of an issue. "Oracle has done a good job in general integrating and rewriting acquisitions onto one platform," he said. (more…)