There will be no escape once Twilio snaps up SendGrid in $2bn deal

A message to you, Rudy. Or a call. Or maybe an email?

Customer engagement outfit Twilio has confirmed its intent to snap up email marketing platform SendGrid in a deal worth around $2bn in stock.

It is, in many ways, a match made in heaven. San Francisco-based Twilio has tools designed to annoy engage customers via programmable SMS, chat, WhatsApp or video. It also provides an API to allow developers to make, receive and monitor calls around the world. It even gives access to fax for customers yet to move beyond the 1990s. It does not, however, do much in the way of email.

Enter Denver-based SendGrid, which claims email delivery is its "passion" and has an API and platform designed to ensure emails make it into the targeted mailboxes. It reckons it processes over 45 billion emails every month, and in the last year over 50 per cent of the world's email addresses were sent an email through SendGrid.

While those statistics may be vaguely horrifying to some, they are undoubtedly a customer engagement specialist's dream. Hence Twilio acquiring SendGrid's email know-how with the assistance of $2bn in Twilio Class A shares.

The price might be eye-watering, but once the deal closes in the first half of 2019, the combined communications outfit reckons its annual revenues will top $700m from over 100,000 customers (and millions of developers).

Twilio has enjoyed impressive growth, reporting a jump of 54 per cent in its Q2 total revenue for 2018 to $147.8m compared to the same period last year. SendGrid reported $35.7m in revenues for its Q2, up 32 per cent from the same period in 2017. ®

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