LinkedIn — the social network for people looking to connect with others in their professional fields and find work with more than 810 million users — has a long-standing activity in marketing and advertising on its own platform; Today, it’s announcing an acquisition that could signal its ambitions to provide more analytics and insights on the wider internet. The Microsoft-owned networking platform has acquired Oribi, a Tel-Aviv startup specializing in marketing attribution technology. The deal will see LinkedIn establish its first office in Israel.
Terms of the agreement were not disclosed in the blog post announcing the acquisition, but sources tell us that LinkedIn paid between $80 million and $90 million for Oribi, a figure other outlets also appear to be reporting. As a startup, Oribi had raised just under $28 million in funding, according to Pitchbook datafrom investors like Sequoia, TLV Partners, Ibex and others (including taking some funding from Google as part of a local accelerator run by the search giant).
The case is interesting on two levels. First, it’s a signal that LinkedIn continues to invest in its marketing and advertising services, an area that’s growing at a rapid pace for the company. Chief Product Officer Tomer Cohen noted in today’s blog post that marketing services revenue grew 43% year-over-year. But with some 57 million businesses “building their brands on Pages” and more than 24,000 virtual events created each week on LinkedIn, there’s clearly a lot more growth that can be harnessed here if those businesses receive more features and tools to achieve this. This is only the second acquisition LinkedIn has made in recent years to grow this part of the business, the other being the acquisition drawbridge in 2019.
Second, the acquisition of Oribi specifically signals a sea change in what LinkedIn sets out to do when it comes to marketing. Oribi’s mission – as we described earlier – has been to democratize web analytics. In other words, he wants to make it easier for small businesses to create and run custom analytics to measure the impact of their marketing strategies, which larger businesses may have teams to run, but small businesses usually have to give up because they lack resources.
“A lot of companies focus more on the high end,” Iris Shoor previously told TechCrunch. “Usually these solutions are very much based on many technical resources and integrations – it’s the Mixpanels and Heap Analytics and Adobe Marketing Clouds.”
Notably, Oribi competes with Google Analytics, which means that now LinkedIn (and by association Microsoft) also comes up against one aspect of Google’s formidable advertising and digital marketing machine.
“With the integration of Oribi’s technology into our marketing solutions platform, our clients will benefit from enhanced campaign attribution to optimize the ROI of their advertising strategies,” Cohen wrote today. “This means our clients will be able to more easily measure website conversions with automated beacons and no-code technology, as well as build more effective audiences, all in a way that prioritizes privacy by design.”
LinkedIn didn’t say how many people from Oribi are joining, except to note that “several members of the Oribi team, including founder and veteran entrepreneur, Iris Shoor,” are expected to join the larger company and work in the new LinkedIn office in Tel Aviv. .