PandoDaily has learned that fledgling mobile chat platform provider Look.io is being acquired by LivePerson.
The Los Angeles-based startup, which recently completed its incubation within Amplify.la, offers plug-and-play tools, such as live-chat and screen sharing to mobile app developers, specifically in the enterprise help desk space.
To date, Look.io’s biggest partnership was with last minute hotel marketplace Hotel Tonight, although the company had integrated its service with several lesser-known local startup application developers.
One local VC that I spoke to about the transaction says, “That’s great news for Look.io. It’s an exciting space. But I was always worried there weren’t enough large enterprise clients for them to hit the revenue numbers investors are looking for. This way, they join forces with one of their biggest potential threats, a large incumbent who may have otherwise chosen to compete with them.”
In a public release about the transaction, LivePerson CEO and founder Robert LoCascio said:
“As more consumers shift towards mobile-based interactions, it’s becoming increasingly important for businesses to meaningfully connect with consumers via their mobile device of choice. With the integration of Look.io’s innovative mobile technology into the LivePerson platform, we will be able to offer our customers a powerful turnkey mobile solution that will enable them to engage and support their customers through an optimized mobile experience.”
Given that LivePerson describes itself as “provider of real-time chat, voice, and content solutions that increase conversions and improve customer experience,” this acquisition would seem like a combination of a defensive move and a shortcut to expanding its mobile offerings.
I spoke with co-founder Grant Miller,who was at LivePerson’s NYC headquarters at the moment. “We’re continuing to work on real-time mobile chat as part of the LivePerson team,” he says. “Our product will be rebranded & more deeply integrated with the LivePerson platform. The whole team is coming on board, [in addition to Mark and I] including our lead iOS developer Joe Toscano,head of product Asher Hunt who recently joined from Chill.com, and our engineer and first employee Jono O’shea.”
The CEO told me that LivePerson will be opening an office for Look.io in Santa Monica, where they’ll continue to build the product and expand the existing team.
Miller also clarified the situation around the company’s early financing coment, saying, “In addition to funding from Amplify, we actually raised a small advisory round back in November from Tom McInerney, Diego Berdakin, Farhad Mohit, Kamran Pourzanjani, and Emilio Diez Barroso.”
[This post has been updated from its original version to include comments from Look.io co-founder and CEO Grant Miller]