Boss Insights - Tech M&A Round Up - 15th May 2020

Facebook Buys Giphy For A Reputed $400M
New York - 15th May 2020 - Facebook has announced it’s acquiring GIF search engine Giphy. First reports on the deal were by Axios, which said the price was around $400 million. In a statement, Vishal Shah, VP of Product, Facebook, said that Giphy will become part of the Instagram team. “We’ve used Giphy’s API for years, not just in Instagram, but in the Facebook app, Messenger and WhatsApp,” Facebook said in a statement. “Giphy will continue to operate its library (including its global content collection), and we’re looking forward to investing further in its technology and relationships with content and API partners.” Shah continued: “We see the positivity in how people use GIPHY in our products today, and we know that bringing the GIPHY team’s creativity and talent together with ours will only accelerate how people use visual communication to connect with each other.

Geneva-based SonarSource to Acquire German Code Security Startup RIPS Technologies
Geneva – 14th May 2020 - RIPS is the first acquisition for SonarSource, which has open-source and commercial code analysers to help developers manage code quality. In a blog announcing the deal, SonarSource CEO, Olivier Gaudin, said: “One of the things that drives us at SonarSource is impact. And we believe that only developers can have a sustainable impact on Code Quality and Code Security. At the end of the day, they are the ones changing the code, right?” Gaudin continued to explain the reationale for the acquisition, explaining that about three years ago, SonarSource decided to add some security features to their products and now, by buying RIPS, their customers will benefit from having the best analysers on the market with the product. According to Gaudin, conversations regarding an acquisition had begun last June and became more serious in January of this year. Having explained the vision and rationale behind the acquisition, Gaudin ended the blog post, commenting: “I am very happy that 25 RIPSlers joined the 145 SonarSourcers and that, after Geneva (Switzerland), La Roche-sur-Foron (France), Austin (Texas), we now have our 4th office in Bochum, Germany.”

Kustomer Acquires to Deepen Intelligent Automation Capabilities
New York – 14th May 2020 - Kustomer, the omnichannel SaaS platform reimagining enterprise customer service to deliver standout experiences, announced today it has signed an agreement to acquire, a customer service automation company founded in 2016 that helps companies scale intelligent customer service without compromising experience. Reply leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning models to improve agent efficiency through self-service chatbot and deflection capabilities. This announcement comes on the heels of the expanded roll-out of Kustomer IQ, the artificial intelligence engine embedded across Kustomer’s CRM platform. With Reply, Kustomer can provide even deeper intelligent self-service and assistance via Natural Language Processing (NLP) based chatbots, enhanced omnichannel customer deflection and machine learning based response suggestions. Madrid based Reply will also accelerate Kustomer’s European growth by significantly increasing its presence in the region. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

iCapital Network® Acquires Artivest, Extending iCapital’s Leadership Position in the Alternative Investments Technology Ecosystem
New York iCap – 13th May 2020 - iCapital Network1, a financial technology platform, driving access and efficiency in alternative investing for the asset and wealth management industries, and Artivest, a technology company for accessing and investing in alternatives, have announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which iCapital will acquire the Artivest platform and operating businesses. Under the terms of the agreement, iCapital will purchase the majority of Artivest’s assets, including all technology and its operating platform. The acquisition will create further operational economies of scale in the offering and servicing of alternative investments and additional benefits for both Artivest and iCapital clients and partners. Commenting, Lawrence Calcano, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of iCapital Network, said: “Given our shared mission to facilitate meaningful alternative investing opportunities across the wealth and asset management spectrum, this acquisition was compelling for a number of reasons. We have long admired Artivest’s technical innovations and capabilities in registered funds and direct investments, and the strength of their team. The integration of these attributes with iCapital’s already robust platform and product offerings creates a powerful combination delivering a ‘best-in-breed’ technology experience while also presenting new platform partners and strategies to our respective clients.”

Atlassian to Acquire Start Up, Halp
Atlassian has announced that it is acquiring Halp, an early-stage startup that enables companies to build integrated help desk ticketing and automated answers inside Slack. Halp has also announced its second product: Halp Answers. The new tool will work hand in glove with its existing product, Halp Tickets, which lets Slack users easily create a Help Desk ticket without having to leave the tool. In a blog post announcing the deal, the company wrote: “Halp Answers enables your teams to leverage the knowledge that already exists within your company to automatically answer tickets right in Slack. That knowledge can be pulled in from Slack messages, Confluence articles or any piece of knowledge in your organization,” Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Microsoft is acquiring Metaswitch Networks to expand its Azure 5G strategy
Microsoft has announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Metaswitch Networks, a provider of virtualized network software and voice, data and communications solutions for operators. The convergence of cloud and communication networks presents a unique opportunity for Microsoft to serve operators globally via continued investment in Azure, adding additional depth to their hyperscale cloud infrastructure with the specialized software required to run virtualized communication functions, applications and networks. This acquisition comes hot on the heels of the previous acquisition of Affirmed Networks, which closed on April 23, 2020. Metaswitch’s complementary portfolio of ultra-high-performance, cloud-native communications software will expand Microsoft’s range of offerings available for the telecommunications industry. Microsoft intends to leverage the talent and technology of both organizations, extending the Azure platform to deploy and grow these capabilities at scale, securely, efficiently and in a way that creates a sustainable ecosystem.

VMware Advances Intrinsic Security Strategy, Announcing Intent to Acquire Octarine
Palo Alto, California – 13th May 2020 - VMware, Inc, an innovator in enterprise software, made two key announcements during Connect 2020, the company’s annual cybersecurity user and partner conference (hosted virtually by VMware Carbon Black): The intent to acquire Octarine, whose innovative security platform for Kubernetes applications helps simplify DevSecOps and enables cloud native environments to be intrinsically secure, from development through runtime. The creation of a Next-Gen SOC Alliance along with Splunk, IBM Security, Google Cloud’s Chronicle, Exabeam, and Sumo Logic. The alliance empowers SOC teams with visibility, prevention, detection and response capabilities that can uniquely leverage the VMware fabric. Patrick Morley, General Manager and Senior Vice President, Security Business Unit, VMware, said: “Acquiring Octarine will enable us to further expand VMware’s intrinsic security strategy to containers and Kubernetes environments by embedding the Octarine technology into the VMware Carbon Black Cloud. This, combined with native integrations with Tanzu, vSphere, NSX and VMware Cloud Foundation, will create what we believe is a unique and compelling solution for intrinsically securing workloads. And, with the addition of our AppDefense capabilities merged into the platform, we can fundamentally transform how workloads are better secured.”

Venafi acquires Jetstack, the startup behind the cert-manager Kubernetes certificate controller 14th May 2020 - Vendor of certificate and key management for machine-to-machine connections, Venafi, is acquiring Jetstack, a UK startup that helps enterprises migrate and work within Kubernetes and cloud-based ecosystems, which has also been behind the development of cert-manager, a popular, open-source native Kubernetes certificate management controller. Jetstack has been working with Venafi to integrate its services and had a strategic investment from Venafi’s Machine Identity Protection Development Fund. Jeff Hudson, CEO of Venafi, said in a statement: “In the race to virtualize everything, businesses need faster application innovation and better security; both are mandatory. Most people see these requirements as opposing forces, but we don’t. We see a massive opportunity for innovation…” Financial terms of the deal, which is expected to close in June of this year, have not been disclosed.

Self-funded and Profitable Australian Fintech, TradeFloor, Makes Major Acquisitions
Melb, Victoria - 11th May 2020 - TradeFloor, a fintech provider of derivatives risk management software and trading technology has announced the acquisition of both self-clearing online stockbroker, OpenMarkets and wealth management solution, CCUBE’s technology. With these acquisitions, the fintech reveals its intention to build a trading ecosystem with a full suite of financial products for planners, advisers, and retail traders. TradeFloor, OpenMarkets, and CCUBE now belong to one corporate entity, OpenMarkets Group, which will be led by Managing Director Ivan Tchourilov, Chief Technology Officer, Brock Janiczak and Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel, Deane Sweeney. Ivan Tchourilov, Managing Director, TradeFloor, said: “These acquisitions will enable us to build an independent trading ecosystem where advisers and planners can come to find the best possible solutions for clients. We’re also building dedicated products like OpenTrader, a trading platform for self-directed investors. We’ve already seen significant economic results come out of the OpenMarkets acquisition and have been able to fast-track our plans to strengthen our intermediary offering with the acquisition of CCUBE.”

Equinix Announces Public Offering of $1.5 Billion of Common Stock to Fund Acquisition
Redwood City, California – 11th May 2020 - Equinix, Inc, a global interconnection and data center company, has announced the pricing of an underwritten public offering of 2,250,000 shares of its common stock at a price to the public of $665.00 per share. All shares of common stock to be sold in the offering are offered by Equinix. In addition, Equinix has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 337,500 shares of its common stock. Equinix is currently in advanced discussions with a seller to acquire selected data center sites and their operations. If Equinix completes the Potential Acquisition, it intends to use a portion of the net proceeds of the offering to fund the costs, and the remainder for general corporate purposes, which could include repayment of indebtedness, capital expenditures and working capital. The completion of the offering is not contingent upon the completion of the Potential Acquisition. If the Potential Acquisition is not completed, then Equinix intends to use all of the net proceeds for general corporate purposes.

Sinch to Acquire SAP Digital Interconnect for ‎€225 Million
Stockholm, Sweden and Walldorf, Germany –  5th May 2020 - Sinch AB, a cloud communications company for mobile customer engagement, and SAP SE, have announced that Sinch AB has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire SAP’s communications unit SAP Digital Interconnect. SDI offers cloud-based communications products and serves more than 1,500 enterprise customers throughout the world. Sinch and SDI share a focus on digital business transformation, creating a first-class customer experience, and ensuring the highest possible quality of services. Sinch will acquire all assets and IP belonging to SDI. Sinch, which has a scalable platform for messaging, voice and video, will pay EUR 225 million (approximately $250 million USD) on a cash and debt-free basis. This is Sinch’s second transaction exceeding $100 million USD since late March. On March 26, Sinch announced its intention to acquire Wavy in a deal valued at $119 million USD.

Anajet, Inc. to Merge into Ricoh Printing Systems America, Inc. on June 1, 2020
Tustin, CA – 1st May 2020 – Ricoh Printing Systems America, Inc, a Delaware-incorporated company has announced that on April 30, 2020, its Board of Directors has resolved to merge its wholly-owned subsidiary Anajet, Inc., a California-incorporated company, in an absorption-type of merger, effective as of June 1, 2020. As the merger involves a merger of RPSA’s wholly-owned subsidiary, the impact of the merger on RPSA’s consolidated financial results will be minor. All products, services, warranties, company contact information, and business hours remain the same, with Anajet’s full Technical Support and Customer Care teams available to provide regular services.

15 May 2020
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