FORRward: A Weekly Read For Tech And Marketing Execs
Humana Commits To Cloud-Based Innovations To Reimagine Heathcare
Humana signed a multiyear strategic partnership with Microsoft to build predictive and personalized healthcare solutions to help its members manage and overcome health issues. Among its broad innovation portfolio are moves to empower doctors to deliver personalized, proactive health care by providing a holistic view of their patients, ensuring preventive care, keeping up with medication schedules and refills, and offering perspective on solutions to social barriers to health, such as food insecurity, loneliness, and social isolation. This is the latest cross-industry innovation partnership focused on customer health advancement, the key theme of CIO analyst James Staten’s June 2019 innovation trends report.
Wheel Of Fortune . . . On SaaS CEO Island
Is the future all about subscriptions? The latest round of surprise CEO appointments suggests that it might be. First, Bill McDermott, who was CEO of SAP and a big proponent of SaaS and the cloud, left under cloudy skies, supposedly “retiring” from SAP, only to be hired by ServiceNow, a rising SaaS vendor as . . . CEO — so no retirement there. Why was that slot open? Because outgoing ServiceNow CEO, John Donahoe, was tapped by Nike to become its new . . . CEO. Might Nike be aiming for SaaS services to run alongside its shoes? Subscription shoe service? Or subscription shoe-use-augmentation services? We bet on the latter. In the meantime, SAP is still looking for its new SaaS champion, though at least in its CRM business, it brought in SaaS executive Bob Stutz from . . . Salesforce. May your wheel of fortune keep turning ’round.
Roku Buys DSP Dataxu: Good For Roku, But What About Everyone Else?
Roku announced that it is buying demand-side platform (DSP) Dataxu for $150M. Marketing leaders looking for valuable reach should pay attention to this deal. This is a great move for Roku. Roku’s ad and platform business is growing and is more profitable than its hardware business. Roku needs a more robust tech foundation to keep up with this growth — which Dataxu would provide. This acquisition also jives with Forrester findings on cross-channel video advertising platforms: that major buy-side players are investing in over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV (CTV). Roku can make a strong pitch to advertisers looking to reach a sizable OTT crowd and find targetable audiences built off Roku’s first-party data. Roku has more active accounts than Comcast has residential subscribers: 30.5 million for Roku compared to Comcast’s 27.6 million. That said, Roku knows it’s sitting on valuable data — it could keep these customer relationships close to the vest, taking a walled garden approach that requires advertisers to buy direct. Check out our blog post for more on what this deal means for today’s marketing leadership.