Constant Contact, a provider of email services, announced Wednesday that it's bought SinglePlatform, which helps small businesses market themselves across the Web. The pricetag is $65 million in cash, plus an earnout, that could bring the total deal to $100 million.
The purchase price was about $65 million in cash, subject to certain adjustments. Additionally, Constant Contact has granted approximately $5 million in cash and equity compensation for employee retention purposes and may be obligated to pay between $10 million and $30 million if SinglePlatform achieves certain revenue objectives over the next two years.
With the acquisition, it appears that Constant Contact is broadening its offerings to become a marketing company as well as an email service provider. Additionally, SinglePlatform creates leads for Constant Contact because it helps consumers find local businesses.
As part of the acquisition, Constant Contact will make it free for small businesses to create basic listings that will be delivered through SinglePlatform's publishing partners. This free offering will give it a competitive position against Yext, which also helps local businesses manage their marketing across multiple sites (in its case 50 websites, such as Yelp) from one central location. Yext charges about $40 a month, or $500 a year.
Yext just raised $27 million for a $270 million valuation, some 5.4 times the $50 million in revenue the company is estimating it will generate this year.
SinglePlatform raised $4.45 million in venture financing from DFJ Gotham Ventures, New World Ventures, First Round Capital and RRE Ventures.
Here's the Constact Contact release:
Constant Contact®, Inc. (NASDAQ: CTCT) today announced that it has acquired privately owned SinglePlatform, which helps small businesses get discovered through web and mobile searches. SinglePlatform gives small business a single place to update their critical business information and delivers that information across a publishing network that reaches more than 200 million consumers per month. This network includes sites like Foursquare, New York Times, YP, and UrbanSpoon, as well as the business's social media profiles, website, and mobile site. SinglePlatform lets small businesses quickly distribute rich content so that consumers can find it at the very moment they are looking to make a purchase decision. The SinglePlatform offering complements the current Constant Contact suite of online engagement marketing tools by helping small businesses reach and engage their next customer even earlier in the customer lifecycle.
"There are hundreds of online and mobile sites that consumers use to find local businesses and make purchase decisions. It's literally impossible for time-starved small businesses to keep up with all of them," said Gail Goodman, CEO of Constant Contact. "Almost 50 percent of searches for local businesses happen without a specific business in mind1 so it's absolutely critical that small businesses are listed everywhere to ensure they are found when and where consumers are looking. SinglePlatform makes that incredibly simple - update your information once, and it's delivered to all of the important search engines, apps, directories, and review sites."
As part of the acquisition, Constant Contact will make it free for small businesses to create basic listings that will be delivered through SinglePlatform's publishing partners. In addition, SinglePlatform will continue to offer its paid-for Digital Storefront(TM) product, allowing small businesses to add rich content to their listings, such as menus, products and services, photos, and pricing, to give consumers the information they need when they are making purchase decisions.
"The internet is shifting from a listing directory to a discovery engine," said Wiley Cerilli, CEO of SinglePlatform. "The first step is making sure your listing is available wherever people are searching. The real magic happens when rich business information - menus, product photos, videos - is delivered at the moment that people are making a purchase decision. SinglePlatform's Digital Storefront is designed to do just that, getting small businesses in front of more people with the type of information that drives new customers and increased sales."
SinglePlatform will continue to operate out of its New York City offices. All of SinglePlatform's employees will join the Constant Contact team, and Cerilli will join the Constant Contact executive team as vice president and general manager, SinglePlatform, reporting directly to Goodman.
"We're thrilled to have the talented SinglePlatform team join Constant Contact. SinglePlatform is just as passionate about small business success as we have always been," said Goodman. "I look forward to introducing our half a million small business customers to their offering and sharing the benefits of our suite of engagement marketing tools with SinglePlatform's rapidly growing user base."
To learn more, please go to www.constantcontact.com/singleplatform.