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Oracle acquires AddThis to bolster its content tracking capabilities

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Software giant Oracle has added AddThis to its marketing cloud in an acquisition announced this week. The technology acquisition is intended to strengthen the company’s data-as-a-service offering.

The $175m deal was revealed in a “letter to customers and partners” from Omar Tawakol, senior vice president and general management of Oracle Data Cloud. Tawakol described AddThis as “a leading provider of publisher personalisation, audience insight and activation tools that powers 15 million websites and enables unmatched audience segment quality, scale and insight“.

He added that the acquisition was intended to help Oracle customers better “enable understanding of consumer behaviour across all media channels”.

He continued: “Oracle Data Cloud ingests third-party data, extracts value, and activates the data to drive insights and harness this knowledge for targeting, personalization and measurement. With the addition of AddThis, Oracle Data Cloud’s offering is expected to deliver unprecedented levels of audience insight, measurement and reach.”

The acquisition will help Oracle compete in the growing marketing automation sector, in which detailed market intelligence about customers is increasingly key. In the past, such customer market intelligence would be based on surveys. Today, though, much more information about customers and their interests can be gleaned via the web, and added to marketing databases. These can be used as the basis for more targeted marketing and advertising.

That is reflected in the origins of AddThis, which was started as a humble social bookmarking tool allowing website owners to offer social-media “widgets” to enable browsers to bookmark content they liked on platforms such as Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.

At the same time, it provided this information to publishers to enable them to get a better picture about the types of content of interest to their readers – all helpfully identified via their social media accounts and the AddThis tool.

AddThis will be added to a number of other recent acquisitions in Oracle’s Data Cloud, including cloud-based big data marketing platform BlueKai, which Oracle bought for $400m in February 2014; and consumer-data collection company Datalogix, which Oracle purchased for $1bn in December 2014.

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