Twitter is apparently in acquisition talks with ZipDial, an Indian start-up, to take a step ahead in international growth and mobile marketing, according to a report from TechCrunch. Further, citing sources, the report says the amount spent by the micro-blogging site could be between $30 million and $40 million, and the deal could be announced later this week.
Twitter said to be eyeing ZipDial
Describing the Indian start-up, the report says, “ZipDial is growing in popularity amongst mobile users as the app is unique to its home market. People who call numbers but hang up before the call is answered, using the action as a simple alert that doesn’t cost any money.” This type of alert is useful for commercial purposes and provides valuable analytics to track everything.
As per the report, the deal between the companies is moving through different stages. Citing another source, the report says other companies such as Facebook are also eyeing ZipDial. The report adds that, due to the holiday season, the deal was subdued, but talks will pick up again. Another source said there is no solid deal yet but there have been many rounds of talks.
Stanford-educated U.S. transplant Valerie Wagoner (CEO), Amiya Pathak (the COO who has also worked and studied across India and the U.S.), and Sanjay Swamy (chairman and an active investor in other startups) are the founders of ZipDial.
Twitter is planning to tap users who are not Twitter users or even registered with the site. Twitter is working on its strategy of monetizing its large amount of “logged out” and casual users. The latest acquisition (if it goes through) will surely help Twitter to better monetize its subscribers, both registered and casual.
U.S. firms eying Indian start-ups
Lately U.S. companies have been keen to acquire Indian startups, and if this deal goes through, then it will be the latest one in a growing list. U.S. firms are cherry-picking the best talent and knowledge in massive markets like India, which is considered to be one of the fastest and biggest in the world.
Almost a year ago, Facebook acquired app performance analyzer LittleEye Labs, which marked the social networking company’s first acquisition of an Indian startup. Also Yahoo acquired Bookpad, a maker of editing and collaboration software. Twitter was considering buying another analytics company called Frrole, but the deal failed to materialize, reports TechCrunch.