The digital asset management (DAM) market continues to consolidate with the latest big purchase of San Mateo, CA based WebDAM by Bynder, a European player based in Amsterdam that has been expanding in the US. Consolidation signals maturity in the marketplace and that means that differentiation isn’t as easy. The hip Bynder culture and SaaS-based DAM platform will appeal to enterprises and startups alike, which means greater pressure on industry stalwarts to innovate.

Almost a year ago we saw Aprimo buy ADAM Software and in 2016 OpenText bought HP MediaBin. This market consolidation will ultimately be good for enterprises as their preferences begin to shift from best-of-breed solutions to best-of-suite, according to Forrester’s 2017 Digital Experience Delivery Online Survey. Best-of-suite means tighter integration between once disparate silos of content and data and often lower costs versus multiple point solutions.

Here’s what this acquisition means for the market:

  • Large DAM vendors will feel pressure to innovate, but smaller ones will feel more. This acquisition will have a stronger affect on mid-market deals than enterprise ones because of the spaces in which Bynder and WebDAM typically play. The bigger vendors who target enterprise-wide deals will be forced to innovate on strategy while mid-market players will need to innovate on capabilities. In order to remain competitive, larger vendors will need to offer mid-market level solutions that can easily scale to the enterprise.
  • Bynder will continue to gain momentum. The company’s DAM product appeals to both enterprises and SMB use cases. In our 2016 DAM Wave, Bynder had a solid SaaS-based DAM with enterprise viability. Now buyers expect SaaS as standard. This acquisition will help Bynder continue its forward momentum in the market. By the way, our 2018 DAM Wave evaluation is underway and we expect to publish it in May.
  • WebDAM offers its customer portfolio. This isn’t a play for WebDAM’s technology—they lag behind the market in capabilities—but it is a way to upsell WebDAM clients on Bynder technology. Many DAM vendors have begun to modularize their offerings and go to market with a core DAM and more robust creative workflows as separate components.

Digital asset management software is critical to marketers who need to manage both upstream creative workflows and the downstream delivery of content. DAM has moved from a mere parking lot for assets to a technology that manages the end-to-end lifecycle of content. Nearly 60% of global marketing decision makers said they planned to increase spend on content and personalization in 2017, according our Forrester’s Business Technographics Survey, and DAM aligns with that vision. We don’t think this is the end of the market consolidation. There are a lot of smaller DAM providers (see our 2017 DAM Vendor Landscape) that could be acquisition targets.

What do you think of the latest market consolidation? Comment below or find me on Twitter.