• September 20, 2018
  • By Leonard Klie, Editor, CRM magazine and SmartCustomerService.com

Adobe Acquires Marketo for $4.75 Billion

After days of speculation, Adobe Systems today announced that it will indeed acquire marketing automation firm Marketo for $4.75 billion. This is Adobe's largest acquisition ever and a clear sign that Adobe wants to become a serious player in the marketing automation space.

The acquisition of San Mateo, Calif.-based Marketo adds to Adobe's growing portfolio of marketing technologies, which are housed in its Experience Cloud suite. The deal brings together Adobe Experience Cloud analytics, content, personalization, advertising, and commerce capabilities with Marketo's lead management and account-based marketing technology to help B2B companies create, manage, and execute marketing campaigns at scale.

Marketo offers a cloud platform for B2B marketing engagement, bringing together planning, engagement, and measurement capabilities into an integrated B2B marketing platform.

"The imperative for marketers across all industries is a laser focus on providing relevant, personalized and engaging experiences," said Brad Rencher, executive vice president and general manager of Digital Experience at Adobe, in a statement."The acquisition of Marketo widens Adobe's lead in customer experience across B2C and B2B and puts Adobe Experience Cloud at the heart of all marketing."

"Adobe and Marketo both share an unwavering belief in the power of content and data to drive business results," said Steve Lucas, CEO of Marketo, in a statement. "Marketo delivers the leading B2B marketing engagement platform for the modern marketer, and there is no better home for Marketo to continue to rapidly innovate than Adobe."

Adobe has shown in the past that it is willing to make key acquisitions to strengthen its marketing portfolio, starting with its 2009 acquisition of data analytics firm Omniture for $1.8 billion. Other notable moves were its acquisition of Day Software, a website and mobile app development platform provider, for $240 million; its acquisition of Neolane, a provider of cross-channel campaign management technology, for $600 million in 2013; its acquisition of TubeMogul, a video advertising platform provider, for $540 million in 2016; and its most recent acquisition of commerce technology firm Magento for $1.68 billion back in May.

Jason Holmes, Marketo's former chief operating officer and a former Omniture executive at the time it was acquired by Adobe, thinks the Marketo acquisition positions Adobe to compete in the marketing space with the likes of Salesforce.com and Oracle. He also thinks it’s a smart buy that extends Adobe much more seriously into the B2B world and also gives Marketo customers and employees a more sustainable future.

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