Vocus Acquires Email Marketing Company iContact

Email becomes the latest addition to the Vocus marketing suite, a cloud-based social marketing platform.

Vocus a provider of cloud-based marketing and public relations software, announced that it has acquired iContact, a specialist in cloud-based email and social marketing software. iContact is used by more than 70,000 organizations to create and publish professional-quality emails designed to engage, educate and retain customers. With this acquisition, email will become the latest addition to the Vocus marketing suite, an integrated solution that helps organizations reach and influence buyers across social networks, online and through the media.

The suite already includes search marketing, social marketing and publicity modules, centered around a recommendation engine. The recommendation engine makes suggestions designed to give businesses the ability to attract customers through search marketing, generate buzz and visibility in the media, engage with customers on Twitter and launch campaigns on Facebook. Unveiled in October 2011, the marketing suite has become the fastest-selling product in the company€™s history.

€œThe Vocus marketing suite is one of the most comprehensive digital marketing solutions for small and midsized businesses,€ said Rick Rudman, president and CEO of Vocus. €œIt combines elements of search marketing, social media and publicity to enable users to reach and influence potential customers in today€™s online world. Now it will include email, which is a vital component of a digital marketing suite. Our customers will be very excited to have a complete cloud marketing suite to help them grow their businesses.€

iContact's email marketing software makes it possible for small and midsize businesses (SMBs) to create and send email campaigns. Its email platform is integrated with social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, and through a rich reporting dashboard, customers can monitor campaign effectiveness and track opens, clicks, likes and follows all in real time. Under the terms of the deal, which closed Feb. 24, Vocus acquired iContact for approximately $91 million in cash, $9 million in common stock and $79 million in redeemable convertible preferred stock, aggregating $169 million of total consideration, net of $10 million cash acquired.

€œThanks to the hard work of many dedicated people, iContact has emerged as a leader in email and social marketing software, with over 70,000 customers and 1 million users,€ said Ryan Allis, co-founder and CEO of iContact. €œI am thrilled that iContact and Vocus are combining forces to become the global leader in cloud-based marketing software for small and midsize businesses."

A company release by Vocus said its customers and iContact customers would experience no change to their current products and services. Once integration of the iContact platform is complete later this year, customers will have the option of continuing to use a stand-alone product or upgrading to an integrated marketing suite combining email, social, search and publicity, the release said. The company, founded in 2003, said in the release that its operations and staff will remain in North Carolina's Raleigh-Durham area.