Tech publisher makes a rare acquisition as it moves into cloud based marketing automation
Tech publishing powerhouse IDG has acquired Triblio as the stakes in account-based marketing (ABM) were raised again today.
Boston-headquartered IDG announced it was buying the Reston, Virginia developer of a SaaS ABM platform exactly a week after Demandbase had said it was taking control of Engagio. The deal sets up a battle royal between the two acquiring companies to target CMOs in the business-to-business space.
In a press release, IDG CEO Mohamad Ali said the purchase would combine IDG's strengths in content, data and global reach with Triblio's highly-regarded cloud-based technology for managing campaigns. For Triblio, founded by ex-Eloqua engineers, the deal provides welcome resources to develop its products and grow its sales and marketing presence.
"By combining Triblio with IDG, we immediately add our global reach and scale, together with premium content and first-party data to accelerate our journey to the next generation of SaaS marketing automation. The role of the CMO is more difficult than ever and piecing together technology solutions is a further burden they don't need. By adding Triblio, they won't have to."
That's a good point. Martech industry slides point to 7,000 or 8,000 players but few can cover all, or even most of, the bases needed for the ABM journey between initial content offer and sales activation and renewal. IDG's traditional tightness with tech sector CMOs will also give it a strong on-ramp to push Triblio's platform at a time when ABM is gathering steam. As the pandemic continues to lead to a tilt towards digital activities, the deal may also be very well timed.
IDG, with roots going back to 1964, has tended in the past to be conservative and this is thought to be the first large acquisition the company has made. It is perhaps best known for publications such as CIO, ComputerWorld and MacWorld, as well as its IDC research wing. However, ever since IDG was itself acquired by China Oceanwide Holdings Group in 2017 and especially since a management change saw tech sector veteran Ali appointed as CEO last year, the company has appeared poised for significant re-engineering. The company has been letting it be known that it is on a rip to become a technology player and by connecting Triblio to its first-party data, massive content engine and existing marketing services operation it has matched actions to its words.
Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but this appears to be a lighthouse event in IDG's history. With little overlap and lots of synergies in this deal, the resulting company should be a powerful player in the ABM and future marketing automation space. And, given IDG 's resources, don't be too surprised if other deals follow.