Sinch snaps up MessageMedia for $1.3B to compete with Twilio in business SMS services – TechCrunch

Since — the Swedish company that provides a suite of services for companies to build communications and specifically “customer engagement” into their services by way of APIs — has made yet another acquisition in its global march to scale up its business and compete more squarely with Twilio. The company today announced that it had acquired MessageMedia, an SMS and other messaging services provider for businesses to manage customer relations, user authentication, alerts, and more.

The acquisition is being made for $1.3 billion — comprised of $1.1 billion in cash and the rest in shares (or in Sweden’s currency, SEK10,745 in total based on Sinch’s share price and yesterday’s exchange rate). The deal is expected to close in the second half of this year. The value is notable for giving Sinch a significant inroad into business SMS because of the timing. Less than a month ago, Sinch’s big rival Twilio announced that it would acquire ZipWhip, another big player in the same area of business SMS, for $850 million.

MessageMedia, based out of Melbourne, Australia, is currently operational also in New Zealand, the U.S., and Europe, where it focuses on providing services primarily to the SMB market with a self-service platform where customers can build and operate services, with the option of using a web portal provided by MessageMedia to handle the traffic. Sinch said it has some 60,000 customers and takes five billion+ messages annually. Growth is robust in the U.S. market, where MessageMedia adds 1,500 new customers monthly. Alongside SMS, it also provides the tech for companies to build MMS experiences and mobile landing pages. It also gives them tools to integrate other features and an API gateway.

SMS services

For Sinch — which is publicly traded in Sweden and currently has a market cap of $13.6 billion — the deal comes just weeks after the company announced that it would be raising $1.1 billion for more acquisitions, with a big chunk of the money coming from Softbank, one of its principal backers. Given this deal’s size announced today, we now know which deal Sinch had in mind. It would be interesting to know whether Sinch’s move to buy MessageMedia predated Twilio’s for ZipWhip, which does not feel like a coincidence.

“Addressing small and medium-sized businesses opens up a new avenue to growth and dramatically expands our addressable market. With MessageMedia as a part of Sinch, we will have the best team in the industry to capitalize on that opportunity,” said Oscar Werner, Sinch CEO, in a statement since he has been on a fast pace of buying up companies in recent times to scale up its existing business, tapping not just into the massive surge of people using phones and the internet to communicate in these pandemic-stricken time, but also to bulk up and more economies of scale in the communications industry, essentially a business built on aggregating incremental revenues.

Katie Axon

After leaving the corporate world to pursue my dreams, I started writing because it helped me organize and express myself. It also allowed me to connect with people who share my passion for art, travel, fashion, technology, health, and food. I currently write on vexsh, a site focused on sharing and discovering what it means to be a creative, passionate person living in today's digital age.

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