Gone Shopping

It’s beginning to feel like the 80s merger mania all over again.

This week Microsoft snapped up mobile search application company TellMe, and Cisco inked a $3.2 billion deal for Web conferencing pioneer WebEx.

inquiring minds want to know: what’s it all mean?

Voxeo VP Marketing John Hibel thinks that regardless of what else these acquisitions mean, they’re good news for his company’s voice applications platform.

“it’s a strong validation for Voxeo because we have a lot in common with the TellMe platform,” he explains. Likewise, WebEx aquisition spells good news for the future of voice integration into business and desktop applications.

Despite similarities between TellMe’s and Voxeo’ respective platforms, Hibel doesn’t see TellMe as a competitor. TellMe focuses on developing mobile search applications while Voxeo targets its platform to developers.

While Voxeo can be used to develop mobile search applications, Hibel doesn’t see that as a big play right now.

“TellMe generates zero mobile search revenue today,” he says. “Nobody’s generating mobile search revenue today. You have to look at this as a long term investment. If you look at the deal, you have to assume that no one is going to write a checkfor $800 million [for something with no current revenue] otherwise.”