Certona provides services to 600 ecommerce websites in more than 70 countries, including those of 93 retailers in the Internet Retailer 2018 Top 1000, more than any other personalization vendor.

Cloud commerce company Kibo Software Inc. has acquired omnichannel personalization platform provider Certona Corp. The acquisition of Certona will offer Kibo clients more personalization options, while Certona clients also gain access to Kibo’s cloud commerce products, the companies say.

Terms were not disclosed.

Kibo, which provides ecommerce technology and order-fulfillment services to online retailers, was created when the private equity firm Vista Equity Partners combined three companies—MarketLive Inc., Shopatron and Fiverun—in January 2016. Vista had acquired ecommerce platform provider MarketLive and order-fulfillment software firm Shopatron for an undisclosed price in late 2015 and then bought mobile point-of-sale vendor Fiverun. Kibo acquired personalization provider Baynote Inc. in September 2016.

Kibo serves more than 400 retailers and brand manufacturers and is an ecommerce platform provider for nine companies in the Internet Retailer 2018 Top 1000, making it the No. 8 provider of platform services to the Top 1000. Platform clients include Beachbody LLC (No. 188), Bluefly Inc. (No. 276) and Cheaper Than Dirt (No. 348).


Certona provides services to 600 ecommerce websites in more than 70 countries, including those of 93 retailers in the Top 1000—more than any other personalization vendor. Certona clients include The Home Depot Inc. (No. 7), Gap Inc. (No. 20), Nike Inc. (No. 27), J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (No. 31) and MSC Industrial Supply Co. Inc. (No. 34), according to Top500Guide.com.

Kibo’s headquarters will remain in Dallas and the Certona headquarters in San Diego will be added to Kibo’s existing “centers of excellence” which already have locations in Austin and Dallas, says Timothy Mercer, content marketing lead at Kibo.

“Certona and Kibo have a shared vision of creating a unified, cloud commerce platform with personalization at its core. This acquisition will greatly accelerate our progress toward that goal,” Mercer says.


The merger also will allow Certona to offer its customers the ability to provide an individualized shopping experience to consumers in stores and online—including on mobile devices—from one software platform, Mercer says.

“This is a great move by Kibo to acquire a well-respected and proven personalization provider, Certona, to its portfolio of solutions. Certona will offer a great deal of credibility to any ecommerce omnichannel conversation Kibo is having in the market,” says Arthur McManus, senior vice president of provider programs at ecommerce technology consulting firm FitForCommerce.

The majority of FitForCommerce’s clients are looking for a full-service omnichannel product and have identified personalization as a key priority in 2019 and 2020, McManus says. “The ability for Kibo to connect three critical aspects of omnichannel—ecommerce platform, order management and now a leading personalization solution—is a powerful message. It allows Kibo to compete on a similar level as Magento/Adobe and Salesforce,” he says.

As of the end of 2018, Certona held 13 machine-learning and artificial intelligence patents, the company says. Since launching in 2004, Certona raised a total of $37 million in funding from investors over two rounds, according to Crunchbase. The most recent funding was a 2016 private equity investment led by Primus Capital.