Thursday, August 7, 2014

July Deals

As promised in the beginning of 2014, I bring to your attention the most important technology mergers and acquisitions for every month passing. In July we saw different deals starting from social, music, mobile to cloud.  All top social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter had new achievements. As in previous months the mentions of technology giants Google and Microsoft became regularly repeating ones. How far are they planning to go?

Google announced to acquire the much-loved music service Songza in a bid to ramp up its Play Music offering. Songza is a unique player in the streaming music space. Rather than providing users with a la carte access to songs and albums, it offers up expert-curated playlists around mood, time of day and general theme. The service is available on the web, for iOS and Android, and even on Chromecast. For now, nothing will change for Songza users however, in the coming months, Google will "explore ways to bring what you love about Songza to Google Play Music.

Microsoft announced acquiring SyntaxTree, the developers of the UnityVS plugin for Visual Studio. UnityVS enables Unity developers to take advantage of the productivity of Visual Studio to author, browse and debug the code for their Unity applications.

Facebook has just bought video ad tech startup LiveRail, which connects marketers to publishers on web and mobile to target 7 billion video ads to visitors per month. A source tells us Facebook paid between $400 - $500 million for LiveRail, but Facebook refused to comment on the terms. The acquisition of the 170-person company could help Facebook own a bigger chunk of video advertising, the fasting growing Internet ad medium.

The enterprise cloud management platform ServiceNow announced it has agreed to acquire the Israeli startup Neebula Systems in a $100 million cash deal.  Neebula's flagship product, ServiceWatch, automates the discovery, mapping, and monitoring of IT-enabled enterprise services. Put simply, it allows a company to discover what kinds of systems and software are running in their IT environment, a preemptive step toward streamlining business processes. 

Microsoft acquired InMage, a startup that focuses on cloud-connectivity and data recovery for businesses. It’s working to integrate InMage's Scout technology into its Azure site-recovery service. The Scout product already works with Azure for data migration, and InMage will bring more business capabilities to the Microsoft service.

Yahoo  acquired the video broadcasting platform RayV, built in 2005 as something of a Joost competitor, it is specialty lies in delivering high-quality video streams to a lot of people.

LinkedIn is buying Newsle, a web app for surfacing news about people in your network. Newsle was founded three years ago and had about two million users at the time of the acquisition. The startup, which had raised more than $2 million in funding, uses machine learning algorithms and natural language processing to highlight news about your connections on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Salesforce acquires RelateIQ - a Palo Alto, Calif.-based intelligent computing startup for $390 million. It automatically captures data from email, calendars and smartphone calls to provide data-science-driven insights in real time, according to Salesforce's8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Twitter announced it has acquired CardSpring to enable “in-the-moment commerce experiences.” CardSpring is an application platform that lets developers build card-linked offers electronic coupons, loyalty cards, and virtual currencies that work with credit cards and other types of payments. Twitter will keep the service open.

Yahoo announced its buying the mobile ad exchange Flurry, a move that could augment Yahoo’s still-waning position in the mobile advertising market. Flurry is one of the biggest mobile ad firms in operation with a reach so vast it tracks more mobile phones than Google or Facebook. Such an acquisition would boost Yahoo’s ambitions to be a “mobile first” company, after it has struggled to match the growth of mobile ad revenues at rivals Facebook and Google.

Google struck a small deal on Wednesday, agreeing to acquire a 3-D graphics company called drawElements. Based in Helsinki, Finland, drawElements produces a graphics test that helps companies make their software compatible with Google’s Android operating system. Google will fold the team into the suite of services that developers use to optimize their products for Android.

Oracle announced that it signed an agreement to acquire TOA Technologies - the leading provider of cloud-based field service solutions that optimize the last mile of customer service for enterprises by coordinating and managing activities between dispatchers, mobile employees and their customers.

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