• February 23, 2011
  • By Leonard Klie, Editor, CRM magazine and SmartCustomerService.com

SAS Acquires Assetlink

SAS, a provider of business analytics software and services, yesterday acquired Assetlink, a provider of marketing resource management solutions. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The deal brings together SAS’s Customer Intelligence offerings with Assetlink's marketing resource management (MRM) solutions to form a single integrated marketing management platform that provides the following:

  • the capability to manage inbound marketing and access real-time analytics;
  • advanced analytics, including the ability to predict customer attrition, calculate customer profitability, and discern topics and sentiment from consumer reviews and complaints;
  • marketing optimization, including the ability to select the best combination of customer, offer, and channel; and
  • data management and cross-channel data integration capabilities portable to any data warehouse platform.

“MRM nicely rounds out SAS’s customer intelligence suite,” says Randy Guard, vice president of product management at SAS, who notes that marketing across the board is quickly “becoming more complicated as there is much more integration between sales and marketing.”

"SAS' powerhouse analytics help companies identify areas to improve marketing, build stronger customer relationships, and increase profitability. Bottlenecks in budgeting, planning, and resource allocation can hinder effective marketing," said Jim Davis, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at SAS, in a statement. "Combining Assetlink's marketing resource management capabilities with SAS' leading customer intelligence solutions helps organizations identify what's working and what needs improvement. Marketers can be more efficient, while delivering smarter campaigns on a larger scale than would otherwise be possible."

Assetlink has 60 employees and is headquartered in Pleasanton, Calif., with other offices in Switzerland, India, and Australia. Its CEO, Chetan Saiya, will remain with SAS as executive director of Assetlink global sales development.

The acquisition “is good for SAS and Assetlink,” Saiya says. “This aligns our two companies 100 percent.”

Guard agrees. “We feel this is a great match for both groups and our combined customers,” he says.

SAS and Assetlink have been partners and have done joint customer engagements for several years, so most of the two firms’ customers will barely notice a change.

“Since there already was an existing partnership, we will not see any huge shakeups as far as what they’re offering,” says David Raab, principal analyst at Raab Associates.

According to Raab, the deal does bring to SAS access to Assetlink’s ‘”great capabilities and personnel.”

The acquisition "ensures that SAS remains a viable alternative to companies on the high end because of this broad spectrum of marketing management solutions," Raab adds. "It allows SAS to offer the full range of marketing planning and execution features that are part of high-end marketing automation suites."

For both Saiya and Guard, the deal represents the future of marketing across the board. “Marketing today is about convergence and transformation,” Saiya explains. “Integrated marketing management is a new term, but the rate of adoption now is tremendous.”

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