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WoodWing Acquired By Investors

by Charles Russell on March 12, 2020

WoodWing, one of the better known players in the Digital Asset Management field yesterday announced that they have been acquired by strategic investment managers Main Capital.  In true venture capitalist argot, the press release describes WoodWing’s software as a ‘Content Orchestration’ platform.

Going forward, WoodWing will accelerate its strategy to build a world-class Content Orchestration platform to serve its key target markets of publishers and enterprise brands. In addition, the company will strengthen its product proposition by following a selective buy-and-build strategy.” [Read More]

Main’s Founder and Managing Partner Charly Zwemstra states that WoodWing will focus on “organic growth” and that it will “strengthen its product proposition” by further acquisitions, suggesting that WoodWing is likely to be part of a wider SaaS slurp strategy by the Scandi-centric backers.  At the time of release, no further details about the acquisition are available, so it’s hard to gauge what the implications are for WoodWing’s existing client base or how the company’s structure might be reshuffled, although we are informed that “key management of WoodWing will retain a minority stake in the business”.

It has been almost two years since VC funded Bynder, another premium DAM vendor, announced that it had bought up WebDAM, and the year before that ADAM software was acquired by Aprimo.  On those occasions, my co-contributor Ralph Windsor noted that the trend in DAM consolidation was seeing significant DAM takeovers and mergers averaging at the rate of around one per year.  This is not really a consolidation, it’s more of an investment, but it seems clear that Main Capital plan to use WoodWing as a a vehicle to acquire other firms, however, these are unlikely to be other DAM vendors for reasons Ralph discussed back in December last year.

If we’re to believe the press release, the majority of WoodWing’s new customers are “marketing teams with complex approval processes and fragmented technical setups”.  Although those with a vested interest in DAM may be pleased to see more focus and integration on the wider Digital Asset Supply Chain (in WoodWing’s case, what appears to be the marketing technology stack), it does beg a couple of immediate questions: whether such acquisitions herald the dilution, diversification and subsequent demise of DAM as a defined sector in its own right; and whether WoodWing have accepted this move in an attempt to shore up their own customer numbers because they too are running into the growth brick wall that a number of their peers have also.

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