NetSuite buys Venda to boost e-commerce, European presence

Venda's technology will be aligned with NetSuite's SuiteCommerce platform

NetSuite is rounding out its e-commerce portfolio with the acquisition of Venda in a move that also pushes the cloud vendor deeper into European markets. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"Venda pioneered the concept of bringing commerce to the cloud and their expertise in supporting the needs of companies throughout Europe is a perfect match for NetSuite as our customers begin to adopt our SuiteCommerce omnichannel platform around the globe," NetSuite CEO Zach Nelson said in a statement.

Venda is based in London. Many of its customers are retailers and include Tesco's F&F Clothing brand and Laura Ashley. The company's Convergent platform gives large retailers the means to provide a "a unified experience for their customers across online, mobile, social and in-store," NetSuite said.

NetSuite first launched SuiteCommerce in 2012. Last year, it acquired mobile POS (point of sale) software vendor RetailAnywhere.

Besides a European foothold, Venda will bring NetSuite "really good globalization capabilities," supporting transactions in multiple currencies and languages, said analyst Ray Wang, founder and chairman of Constellation Research.

"Multi-channel retailing is a growing market that is underserved by the traditional ERP vendors," said analyst Frank Scavo, managing partner of consulting firm Strativa, via email. "Even prior to the Venda acquisition, if a retailer wanted a multi-channel e-commerce product I'd have suggested they take a look at NetSuite. Picking up Venda will make NetSuite even stronger in this market and give them more reference accounts in Europe."

Meanwhile, it wasn't immediately clear Thursday whether NetSuite plans to eventually merge Venda's code base into SuiteCommerce. This is something to watch, Scavo said.

"Venda is not built on the NetSuite platform, so short term I would be concerned about the integration of the two products," he said. "Furthermore, there is quite a bit of overlap between what Venda does and what NetSuite does today. Will Venda's system be an integral part of SuiteCommerce or will it be for all intents and purposes an alternative to NetSuite's existing functionality? That's the thing I'd be looking at over the next year."

NetSuite is expected to discuss the acquisition further during its earnings call next week.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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