Consumer review platform Viewpoints officially announced yesterday its $30 million purchase of PowerReviews, a San Francisco-based SaaS company. With this move, Viewpoints is changing its name to PowerReviews and more than doubling its Chicago team by end of year.
Viewpoints, under the name of parent company Wavetable Labs, and its Austin-based competitor Bazaarvoice entered into a definitive agreement yesterday to finalize the sale, which was the result of an antitrust case filed over a year ago.
Here's how the deal went down: Bazaarvoice bought consumer review provider PowerReviews for over $150 million in May 2012. Shortly after, the Department of Justice began investigating Bazaarvoice for lessening market competition - and by January 2013, a case was filed requesting Bazaarvoice to sell its PowerReviews assets. Viewpoints submitted its bid to purchase PowerReviews in March 2014 - and now the gears are officially in motion.
PowerReviews will significantly boost Viewpoints’ stronghold in the consumer reviews and product ratings space considering PowerReviews has 22 million consumer reviews compared to Viewpoints’ 1 million. As a combined company, over 1,000 clients will be using the consumer reviews platform around the world.
“By combining Viewpoints with PowerReviews we are uniting two leaders to create a compelling new Consumer Engagement Engine that helps brands and retailers to engage their customers, distribute the content around the web, measure the impact and deliver compelling review management services,” Viewpoints founder and CEO Matt Moog said.
With about 30 existing PowerReviews employees in San Francisco joining the team and plans to hire over 35 people in Chicago this year, the company's team will top 80 by the end of 2014. Moog said his River North office is currently recruiting an SVP of Sales, a CMO, a full marketing and sales team, engineers and designers.
These new hires will join a highly experienced combined team which will be led by: CEO Matt Moog (founder of Viewpoints), CTO Jim Morris (who is the founding CTO of PowerReviews), Chief Customer Officer Matt Parsons (who has spent eight years with PowerReviews), SVP of Strategy & Operations Chris Lubkert (previously with Viewpoints) and VP of Finance Jackie Choy (who was with PowerReviews for four years).
Moog, an investor, Microsoft veteran and the former CEO of online coupon service CoolSavings, called this announcement possibly the biggest of his entrepreneurial career. He said he is invigorated by such an incredible opportunity in a dynamic space like consumer reviews.
“Customer reviews sit at the intersection of mobile, social and Big Data,” Moog said. “Customer reviews are the single most valuable kind of social data. They are a major driver of sales, online and offline. Mobile users seek them out while in-store; they are inherently social. This is an incredibly exciting area that we look forward to blazing a new path in.”
Disclosure: Matt Moog is the Chairman and founder of Built In.