Wednesday, November 19, 2014

October Growth Strategy

October M&A success list came a bit later­, anyway some great deals took place in many companies. What I’m thinking about is - calling 2014 a “Google Year” for its acquisition-driven strategy. I’ve been tracking the most important technology acquisitions since January and can say that no other company had so many deals during almost a year.

All the deals are purpose-driven in their own way, but no one can prove their success with the new companies. Let’s hope that all the startups will find a better settlement and a better potential with the world’s giants. 

Here are my top picks from the last month:

Yahoo has acquired mobile messaging application MessageMe, a Whatsapp-like service with $11.9 million in reported outside funding. The company was largely able to raise such funds on the strength of its team and what appeared to be ever-quickening growth. Co-founders Arjun Sethi and Justin Rosenthal had extensive experience in social gaming prior to founding MessageMe. 

Luxoft Holding, announced that it has acquired Radius Inc., a US based solution provider focused on the growing Internet of Things (IoT) industry. Radius delivers modern enterprise solutions across mobile, cloud, data and application programming interface (API) technologies for select Fortune 500 clients to help them capture, manage, and gain value from their growing volume of enterprise data.

Microsoft has signed a letter of intent to acquire Israeli text-analysis startup Equivio, said a person familiar with the company’s plans, as the software maker bulks up products for analyzing data. Equivio makes software that uses machine learning to analyze legal documents and corporate information for use by law firms, corporations and government agencies. The company’s website lists the US Justice Department among its customers.

Google announced that it has acquired Firebase, a backend service that helps developers build realtime apps for iOS, Android and the web that can store and sync data instantly. Firebase currently has almost 110,000 registered developers on its platform and the Firebase team says that the service will continue to work as before and remain platform-agnostic. This is Google’s third major acquisition for its Cloud Platform this year.

Google has hired the founders of two Oxford University artificial intelligence start-ups and announced a partnership with the institution to further develop its DeepMind system. It is acqui-hiring the two academic teams of founders, seven people in all, behind Dark Blue Labs and Vision Factory, two deep learning startups based in the UK, and it is also partnering with Oxford University, which had spun out the two startups, to build out wider research efforts further in the area of AI.

Google announced it has acquired smart home hub startup – a Colorado-based Revolv which made a hardware hub with a bunch of radios packed inside to make all the various smart home devices talk to each other. Through the Revolv app, you could sync up smart home interactions. Revolv will work on Nest’s open API program called “Works with Nest” to “continue to unify the connected home".

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