Tracking a Hot Banana … Gotcha!

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That blog title may have opened YOUR eyes up, but it also is what J.L. Halsey Corp. is doing with its purchase today of ClickTracks Analytics Inc. and Hot Banana Software, a web content management company. Right at a time when the entire click fraud industry is at a crucial point where all the involved parties seem to be moving towards talking the talk and walking the walk (although definitely in baby steps), the purchase of one of the most well-known third-party web analytics companies and an up-and-coming web content company, have definitely got people asking “just who the heck is J.L. Halsey”? Up until now, the firm has been centered on email marketing, with the acquisition in 2005 of Lyris Technologies and EmailLabs. Halsey is determined to target the “mid-sized business market”.

What is interesting about the money involved in these two deals is that there will be achievement bonuses after the acquisition if the two companies meet certain undisclosed performance factors in the first 2 years after takeover. I’ve probably been out of the big deal-making arena for too long (yeah, in my dreams I was right up there with The Donald and David Foster), but that sounds a bit weird to me. It ties the previous owners to the company for a long time after the sale in a means to increase profits from the sale. It would seem more logical to use that time to integrate ClickTracks and Hot Banana into Halsey, rather than rewarding them for performing not as part of the team.

Undoubtedly some MBA person out there can enlighten me as to the reasoning behind this. To me, what is of ultimate interest is the sale of ClickTracks. I just hope Halsey doesn’t let go of the clear, consumer-oriented approach and the community reach tutorials that the company has been so good at. I don’t even use ClickTracks, but I occasionally attend one of their tutorials, just because they’re so darn good, and I think their attention to customer support and service is something that needs to be preserved.

About the Author

Frances Krug has worked in market research since graduating from UCLA with an MA and CPhil in Latin American history. As an editor and online content provider for the last 7 years, she currently is Associate Editor at iNET Interactive, where she also directs Search Marketing Standard's email marketing program.

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