Digital payments company Square has announced plans to acquire Weebly for approximately $365 million in cash and stock. The purchase was in line with Square’s objective to provide a cohesive solution to entrepreneurs in running their businesses across all channels.
Known for its payment software and hardware, Square has diversified its portfolio to include money transfer, business financing, and customer relationship management software. The company offers flexibility in selecting and integrating third-party solutions that include point of sale, accounting software, and other back-office applications. Weebly, on the other hand, provides an easy to use platform for building and hosting websites. Over the years, it has focused on catering to small businesses and online companies.
With the merger, a start-up company doesn’t have to shop around separately for applications, hardware, and platforms compatible with each other to have a presence online and offline. It is one of the challenges in setting up an eCommerce site, especially for those without the know-how to do so. In a statement, Square CEO Jack Dorsey pointed out that the strategic move aims “to bridge these channels, and we can go even further and faster together.”
Square emphasizes the importance of an omnichannel experience in commerce. It simply means that sellers can reach out to potential customers through both digital and physical storefronts. From brand discovery and purchase to returns and exchanges, the seller can interact with the buyer in-store, online, or even in-app.
“From managing orders, appointments, and payments to building a website, running a business is complex, and entrepreneurs around the world want powerful and intuitive tools,” Alyssa Henry of Square said. “Whether they’re an artist, a winemaker, or a hairdresser, with Square and Weebly sellers will have one cohesive solution to build their business.”
David Rusenko, CEO of Weebly, agreed that entrepreneurs would benefit the most from the merger. He wrote, “Together, we will support you to build professional websites and powerful commerce experiences — whether online or in real life. This move reinforces our original mission: to help the world’s entrepreneurs succeed. As Square + Weebly, we’ll be able to help you in more powerful ways than ever before.”
He also assured Weebly clients that no major changes are expected to happen. The transaction, however, will boost Square’s customer base and provide a steady revenue stream. With 40 percent of Weebly’s 625,000 paid subscribers based outside the US, the deal is set to expand Square’s global presence.
Until the deal is finalized in the second quarter of 2018 and cleared of regulatory hurdles, Weebly and Square will continue to operate separately.