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Twilio’s $3.2B Segment acquisition about helping developers build data-fueled apps – TechCrunch

The pandemic has compelled companies to alter the way in which they work together with prospects. Whether or not it’s how they ship items and providers, or how they convey, there may be one widespread denominator, and that’s that every little thing is being compelled to be digitally pushed a lot sooner.

To some extent, that’s what drove Twilio to acquire Segment for $3.2 billion today. (We wrote about the deal over the weekend. Forbes broke the story final Friday night time.) While you get right down to it, the 2 firms match collectively effectively, and broaden the platform by giving Twilio prospects entry to worthwhile buyer information. Chee Chew, Twilio’s chief product officer says whereas it might really feel like the corporate is pivoting within the route of buyer expertise, they don’t essentially see it that manner.

“Lots of people have thought of us as a communications firm, however we consider ourselves as a buyer engagement firm. We actually take into consideration how we assist companies talk extra successfully with their prospects,” Chew advised PJDM.

Laurie McCabe, co-founder and accomplice at SMB Group, sees the transfer associated to the pandemic and the necessity firms need to serve prospects in a extra totally digital manner. “Extra prospects are realizing that delivering a terrific buyer expertise is essential to outlive by the pandemic, and thriving because the economic system recovers — and are prepared to spend to do that even in unsure instances,” McCabe mentioned.

Actually Chew acknowledged that Segment offers them one thing they had been missing by offering builders with direct entry to buyer information, and that would result in some attention-grabbing functions.

“The information capabilities that Segment has are offering a full view of the shopper. It actually layers throughout every little thing we do. I consider it as a horizontal add throughout the channels and increasing past. So I believe it actually helps us advance in a distinct kind of manner […] in direction of getting the holistic view of the shopper and enabling our prospects to construct intelligence providers on high,” he mentioned.

Brent Leary, founder and principal analyst at CRM Necessities, sees Phase serving to to offer a strong data-fueled developer expertise. “This transfer permits Twilio to affect the data-insight-interaction-experience transformation course of by eradicating friction from builders utilizing their platform,” Leary defined. In different phrases, it offers builders that potential that Chew alluded to, to make use of information to construct extra different functions utilizing Twilio APIs.

Paul Greenberg, creator of CRM on the Pace of Gentle, and founder and principal analyst at 56 Group agrees saying, “Phase offers Twilio the flexibility to make use of buyer information in what’s already a strong unified communications platform and hub. And since it’s, in impact, APIs for each, the pliability [for developers] is gigantic,” he mentioned.

That could be so, however Holger Mueller, an analyst at Constellation Analysis says the corporate must be seeing that the pure communication components of the platform like SMS have gotten more and more commoditized, and this deal, together with the SendGrid acquisition in 2018, offers Twilio a spot to broaden its platform into a way more profitable information house.

“Twilio wants extra progress path and it appears like its technique is shifting up the stack, no less than with the acquisition of Phase. Knowledge motion and information residence compliance is a big headache for enterprises after they construct their subsequent era functions,” Mueller mentioned.

As Chew mentioned, early on the issues had been associated to constructing SMS messages into functions and that was the issue that Twilio was making an attempt to resolve as a result of that’s what builders wanted on the time, however because it strikes ahead, it desires to offer a extra unified buyer communications expertise, and Phase ought to assist advance that functionality in an enormous manner for them.

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Ron Miller