What’s On

What is making Indian start-up Simplify360 attractive to buyers?

Indian social analytics startup Simplify360 is reportedly being eyed by potential buyers such as Twitter, Adobe and even WPP.

Bhupendra Khanal, CEO, Simplify360 confirmed that talks were on for strategic investments with several companies.

In an exclusive chat with DMA, Mr Khanal elaborated how social media analytics has heated up in the market in recent times. “Listening is only the beginning, analysis is essential, action is the essence, when it comes to harness the power of social media. Now that social media players themselves, technology and media agencies realise the importance of analysing big data to help marketers, social media analytics has suddenly become a hot topic. The biggies in tech, media and social media companies are eyeing experts who are already established in the market,” he added. Mr Khanal is a through and through big data specialist, having had professional stints with Global Analytics, FICO and MarketIntelligent before starting Simplify360 in 2009.

Simplify360 is being approached for buyouts since the past two years, but the Founder preferred financial investors. Angel investor Amvensys Capital had funded the company way back in December 2012. “But right now, the timing maybe considered perfect for aligning operations with bigger companies,” said Mr Khanal, however, refraining from commenting on developments of the rumoured buyout deals.

Simplify360’s attractive quotient
So what is pulling WPP, Adobe, Twitter towards this Indian start-up specialising in social media? Simplify360’s expertise lies in its SaaS module, which is being favourited by companies globally. “We were the first company globally to offer a social media marketing suite. We realised that engagement, campaigning, analysing and devising solutions for social media are not four different, but one common strategy. Having the first mover advantage in this business, we were able to exercise domain expertise in social media analytics,” said Mr Khanal.

The company has established operations in emerging markets of India, Brazil, Korea, and has concentrated on the non-US, UK geographies, which has helped the company strategically. It offers analytics in over 27 languages and monitoring in 54. As social media becomes bigger, especially in APAC, global interest in analytics is rising. The recent slew of acquisitions of social media analytics firms by WPP, Apple, Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, and the likes prove this point further.

“My goal is to see Simplify360’s solutions as one of the top five in the world,” said Mr Khanal.

Founded in 2009, Simplify360’s client roster includes some of the big names in Indian marketing such as Yamaha, Revlon, Target and Wipro, and offers them a wide gamut of analytics on various social media platforms including online reputation management, customer service, community management, social media research & brand auditing; online sales lead generation, and consumer sentiment analysis.