CM Group and Cheetah Digital announce merger

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CM Group and Cheetah Digital announce merger

CM Group and Cheetah Digital will merge with the latter now operating under the CM Group name.

The companies say the merger expands and enhances their ability to deliver a more complete marketing technology (martech) offering. For CM Group, which has a portfolio of martech companies focused on multichannel digital marketing, the deal delivers Cheetah well-regarded expertise in the field of loyalty.

Sandy Gill, Managing Director at Vector Capital which is an investor in Cheetah Digital said the deal offers CM Group the opportunity to become a global leader in customer acquisition, engagement, retention, and growth, "Marketers are looking for the next generation of technology to be specialised to their needs."

He claimed CM Group is executing on a strategy that meets the needs of their customers while opening up new opportunities to accelerate growth within a fragmented martech landscape.

Billy Loizou, Vice President, Go-To-Market APAC at Cheetah Digital, said the deal would enable Cheetah Digital to expand and mature many areas of the business. "Within our portfolio, we can now offer a plethora of marketing solutions for all business sizes, with Cheetah Digital still remaining as a distinct product offering and Customer Loyalty remaining at the heart and forefront of our offering in the APAC region. This merger now places Cheetah Digital as a home for all marketers and allows us to scale with any businesses on their digital transformation journey."

The existing owners of CM Group, including Insight Partners, will remain the majority owners of the combined company. Vector Capital, which was previously a majority owner of Cheetah Digital, will become a substantial minority owner of the combined company.

For the marketing technology sector, the deal actually enhances competition by growing CM Group's ability to compete with the likes of Salesforce and Adobe who have increasingly dominated the sector in recent years.

Indeed with Sitecore spending $1.2 billion to put itself back in the game, the re-emergence of IBM's Waston marketing group under the Acoustic brand, and the growth of platforms like Hootsuite and Hubspot, the marketing technology industry offers hints of the rude health and robust competition it enjoyed in the middle of the last decade.

Accounting the deal the parties said, "The combined company will own a broad array of technologies referenced in the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Multichannel Marketing Hubs, which orchestrate marketer communications with client segments across multiple channels."

CM Group says it plans significant investments across its portfolio to bring new products to its base of 70,000+ active customers. "What differentiates CM Group is that each of its nine products focuses on specific verticals or market segments. The merger with Cheetah Digital will expand CM Group’s reach into the large enterprise segment. Key Cheetah Digital customers include Hilton, Neiman Marcus, Walgreens and Williams-Sonoma."

“Our merger with Cheetah Digital means CM Group will be well-positioned to meet the needs of customers of all sizes and shapes, and we will continue to be their marketing technology partner as they grow by delivering the right technology at the right time, tailored to their industry and built for the scale at which they operate,” said Wellford Dillard, CEO at CM Group.

“By keeping each CM Group product distinct and focused on specific verticals or market segments, we deliver superior solutions, expertise, and outcomes for customers when compared to the large volume of generalist solutions in the market today.” 

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