Twitter to acquire Indian startup ZipDial in emerging markets play

ZipDial's office in Bangalore will operate as an engineering center for Twitter

Twitter is to acquire ZipDial Mobile Solutions, a Bangalore company that has developed a platform that allows content like promotions to be delivered to users through voice, SMS or an app notification when an user gives a missed call.

The technology takes its cue from the tendency for cost-conscious Indians to signal that they want to talk to someone by placing a call and hanging up before the phone is answered, with the expectation that the other person will then call them back.

The acquisition of the ZipDial platform and its various technologies to address consumers is likely to be useful for Twitter in emerging markets where data access is found to be expensive by consumers or is not easily available.

Users have to just give an advertiser a toll-free "missed call" to a designated phone number to receive content through any of the channels.

"These interactions are especially appealing in areas where people aren't always connected to data or only access data through intermittent wifi networks," Christian Oestlien, Twitter's vice president for product, wrote in a blog post Tuesday.

ZipDial CEO Valerie Wagoner said in a Twitter message that the ambition of the deal was to "Make @twitter even more accessible in emerging markets."

"Our ambitious goal is to make Twitter's unique, great content accessible to 100% of the world's mobile users, including those in emerging markets who will be experiencing the mobile Internet for the first time," she wrote in a blog post.

The proposed acquisition, which was rumored earlier, signals the coming of age for Indian technology startups. Facebook acquired last year Little Eye Labs, a developer in Bangalore of mobile app analysis tools for app developers and testers, and the entire team moved to Facebook's headquarters in Menlo Park, California.

Facebook, in its bid to popularize the Internet and its platform in emerging markets, has previously partnered with ZipDial to launch a "missed call" feature for advertisements on the social network.

Twitter said it had collaborated with ZipDial over the past two years on a variety of campaigns in India, including elections and film promotions.

The founders and employees of ZipDial will join Twitter's Indian operations, and ZipDial's office in Bangalore will operate as an engineering center for Twitter.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Mergers and acquisitionsinternetbusiness issuestwitterZipDial Mobile Solutions

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?