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Eloqua announces IPO

Eloqua, a provider of marketing automation solutions, announced in a statement August 2 its IPO of 8 million shares, priced at $11.50 per share.

Seven million shares are being offered by Eloqua and 1 million are being offered by current shareholders, the statement says. Eloqua CEO Joe Payne rang the opening bell at the NASDAQ  August 2 to mark the IPO occasion.

“We are going to continue investing in our growth and product innovation,” Payne says in an email. “It’s going to mean we have more resources to help improve our clients marketing performance.”

Jeff Ernst, a principal analyst at Forrester say he thinks the IPO is a signal to marketing automation companies and others in the direct marketing field that Eloqua doesn’t want to be acquired by a larger company like SAP or Oracle; Eloqua wants to expand.

“This is an insanely competitive market that they’re operating in, and I think it’s going to give them a lot more capital to begin to do acquisitions,” Ernst says. “This will allow Eloqua to roll up other companies in the industry and will help Eloqua build a more complete suite.”

Ernst says that Eloqua’s social media marketing is lacking. Eloqua has been working to build out its own social capabilities via its Social Suite tools. In July, the company released its Grande Guide to Social Media Generation, a guidebook for B2B marketers.

Marketo, an Eloqua competitor, acquired Crowd Factory, a social platform, in April. Ernst says that given the IPO, he expects Eloqua to soon make a similar acquisition.

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