Deals

Intuit to buy SMB marketing software player Demandforce for $423.5M

Business-software giant Intuit has agreed to acquire small-business marketing software firm Demandforce for $423.5 million in cash, the companies announced today.

Intuit, the maker of QuickBooks, TurboTax, and Quicken, will add Demandforce’s software-as-a-service offerings to its line up to make a more complete package for small- and medium-sized businesses that need a better online presence. Demandforce offers email, mobile, and social tools that help SMBs better connect with customers and drive higher retention rates.

One remarkable fact is that Benchmark Capital, the largest investor in Demandforce, decided not to even announce the firm’s investment in the company, which is a first, according to Bill Gurley, the Benchmark partner who led the deal and who is on the company’s board. Demandforce, based in San Francisco and founded back in 2003, decided to lay low and focus on customer building rather than marketing, he wrote. This is another win for Benchmark, considering it comes on the heels of the $1 billion acquisition of Instagram, where Benchmark was also the largest investor. It’s not clear how much capital Demandforce actually raised though, so it’s hard to know exactly how big of a return this was.

“Demandforce sits at the sweet spot of Intuit’s SMB customer base and is consistent with our goal to help our customers save time and make money,” said Kiran Patel, executive vice president and general manager of Intuit’s Small Business Group, in a statement. “With a compelling customer value proposition, SaaS model and high growth profile, Demandforce will provide opportunities to grow Intuit’s customer base and revenue per customer over time.”

You can see a video outlining Demandforce’s latest offering below:

Photo credit: Demandforce