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Twitter confirms acquisition of mobile marketing startup ZipDial

We had reported
last week
that popular micro blogging service Twitter was in talks to buy

We had reported
last week
that popular micro blogging service Twitter was in talks to buy
ZipDial, a startup founded in India that has built a mobile platform that lets people follow and engage with content across all interfaces. 

Inspired by the popular ‘missed call’ culture in India,
Bangalore based mobile marketing platform ZipDial allows people who call
numbers but hang up before the call is answered, to use this action as a simple
alert that doesn’t cost any money. That alert, in turn, becomes the basis for a
number of other, commercial actions, and analytics to track everything.

Twitter said about the deal “For many, their first online
experience will be on a mobile device – but the cost of data may prevent them
from experiencing the true power of the Internet. Twitter, in partnership with
ZipDial, can make great content more accessible to everyone.” When asked about
the acquisition price, Twitter told me “We aren’t disclosing financial terms of
the deal” but did say “The majority of ZipDial’s team will be joining us.”

Beyond allowing missed call connections to businesses,
Twitter explains it was attracted to ZipDial’s other use cases, such as to
“access great content, including cricket scores, audio programming, Tweets from
their favorite Bollywood stars – and much more – on their mobile phones.
Leading figures, including actors, politicians and athletes, also use the
platform to instantly reach millions of citizens on Twitter through text and
voice messages.”

Twitter described the deal in a
blog
saying:

We’re
very pleased to announce we’ve reached an agreement to acquire ZipDial
(@zipdial), a product partner based in Bangalore, India, to make Twitter even
more accessible to people around the world.

Over
the next several years, billions of people will come online for the first time
in countries like Brazil, India and Indonesia. For many, their first online
experience will be on a mobile device – but the cost of data may prevent them
from experiencing the true power of the Internet. Twitter, in partnership with
ZipDial, can make great content more accessible to everyone.

ZipDial
has built a mobile platform that lets people follow and engage with content
across all interfaces. The user experience combines SMS, voice, mobile web, and
access to mobile apps to bridge users from offline to online. For example,
through ZipDial, it’s easy to engage with a publisher or brand by making a
toll-free “missed call” to a designated phone number. The caller will then
begin receiving inbound content and further engagement on their phone in real
time through voice, SMS or an app notification. These interactions are
especially appealing in areas where people aren’t always connected to data or
only access data through intermittent wifi networks.

Over
the past two years we’ve collaborated with ZipDial on a variety of campaigns,
including the Indian elections, Bollywood film promotions and @MTVIndia’s
#RockTheVote “Dial the Hashtag” campaign. Today, people across India use
ZipDial’s platform to access great content, including cricket scores, audio
programming, Tweets from their favorite Bollywood stars – and much more – on
their mobile phones. Leading figures, including actors, politicians and
athletes, also use the platform to instantly reach millions of citizens on
Twitter through text and voice messages. By coming together with ZipDial, we’ll
help more people around the world enjoy great and relevant Twitter experiences
on their mobile phones.

This
acquisition significantly increases our investment in India, one of the
countries where we’re seeing great growth, and also brings us a new engineering
office in Bangalore.

 

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