Oracle Corp. on Monday agreed to buy startup Datalogix Holdings Inc., an important advertising partner to Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. The deal shows how big software companies are refashioning themselves into marketing powerhouses.
Datalogix is working with Facebook FB, +1.97% Google GOOG, +1.65% and Twitter Inc. TWTR, +3.64% to prove that ads bought on their websites compel people to buy the advertised products in brick-and-mortar stores. Datalogix does this by matching information about Facebook or Google users with retailers’ email databases and in-store purchase histories. Datalogix said it also works with Ford Motor Co. F, +1.26% and Kraft Foods Group Inc. KRFT, +1.26%
The deal spotlights the billions of dollars of acquisitions struck by Oracle, Salesforce.com Inc. CRM, +0.00% and Adobe Systems Inc. ADBE, +0.07% as they increasingly target high-spending marketers. The software titans are motivated by the growing role of technology in crafting personalized sales pitches for consumer products such as soda, cars or movies.
Oracle ORCL, -0.76% alone has acquired four major marketing-tech companies in the last two years. This year, Oracle closed its purchase of BlueKai, a startup that lets marketers track Web surfing habits to target ads, and a $ 1.6 billion purchase of Responsys, which tailors email marketing. Last year, Oracle bought marketing-services firm Eloqua for about $ 935 million. Oracle didn’t disclose what it agreed to pay for Datalogix.
Marketing executives say Datalogix, known in the industry as a data broker, has a valuable trove of information about people’s shopping habits, gleaned from loyalty cards and other marketing programs. The purchasing data helped attract the attention of Facebook and Google, which have started working with Datalogix and others data brokers to allow advertisers to target users based on the data brokers’ information.
An expanded version of this report appears at WSJ.com.