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A Boom In Texting Spurs Latest Smarsh Acquisition

TeleMessage will add extensive mobile carriers and messaging program support to the Smarsh ecosystem.

Smarsh, the capture, archiving and communications analysis provider for many financial services firms (and across several other industries), announced it is acquiring TeleMessage, a well-known mobile messaging, voice capture and archiving firm.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. This continues a multi-year growth-through-acquisition trend at Smarsh, which acquired the Digital Safe archiving and risk management product line from the large multinational software firm Micro Focus for $375 million in November.

Just days before that announcement, Smarsh cybersecurity subsidiary Entreda announced its acquisition of Privva, a cyber-risk assessment firm. Smarsh had acquired Entreda in May 2020 followed a few months later by artificial intelligence pioneer Digital Reasoning in November.

“Highly regulated firms have always needed to capture and retain their digital communications for regulatory compliance, legal discovery, and to protect their brand,” said Goutam Nadella, chief product officer at Smarsh. Nadella joined the firm a little over one year ago from cloud-based, communication and content-sharing platform provider Symphony.

Smarsh has already grown into a major provider of digital communications content capture, archiving, supervision and e-discovery within the brokerage and RIA industries. With this latest acquisition, the firm will be able to combine mobile carrier partnerships in North America, Asia and emerging markets.

It will also be able to expand its ability to store and monitor employee communications on mobile applications that include Signal, Telegram, WeChat, WhatsApp and other mobile instant messaging applications.

Despite increased regulatory compliance requirements from the SEC, FINRA, and other regulators, mobile communication—especially texting—has grown increasingly popular. This, in no small measure, can be attributed to comparatively high open rates by investor clients, as compared to email and other now quaint forms of communication.

This has spurred many compliance and tech providers to the advisor sector to introduce archiving, review and compliance offerings—from Hearsay Systems to Redtail (recently acquired by Orion) and Snappy Kraken, to MyRepChat and others.

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