Infobip Acquires Shift Conference and Invests Significantly in Developers
Increased acquisitions through unlikely verticals demonstrate the unicorn’s commitment to growth.
With the acquisition of Shift Conference, Infobip, a multinational cloud communications unicorn, marked a strategic shift toward putting developers at the core of their business strategy. Shift is a technology conference franchise with over a decade of experience in developing and delivering technology conferences in a variety of industry verticals, including software development, fine arts, and artificial intelligence. Shift Developer, Shift’s flagship conference, is the largest developer event in south-eastern Europe, drawing attendees from over a hundred different countries and speakers from all of the world’s leading technology firms, including Microsoft, Netflix, Amazon Web Services, and Spotify, among others.
Adopting a leadership and experience-based approach to the acquisition.
Apart from acquiring Shift, one of the market leaders in this space, Infobip also named Ivan Burazin, the company’s founder and CEO, to the board as chief developer experience officer. With a decade of experience producing developer, fintech, and artificial intelligence conferences, Burazin has established Shift as a leading producer of European and regional technology conferences.
“The ambition has always been to grow into one of the world’s largest developer conferences, and with the backing of a unicorn and the ability to continue operating independently, that vision appears to have become a reality,” said Ivan Burazin, Shift’s founder and CEO and the current CDXO at Infobip.
The acquisition is expected to provide both companies with new knowledge and business opportunities in this space, which will not only enhance Infobip’s own conference offerings, but also serve as the foundation for the company’s all-new Developer Experience department. Along with organizing global developer conferences, the new department will address the B2C market by engaging developers through developer advocacy teams and all-new startup outreach programs.
Establishing a new vertical on the back of an established brand.
By bringing Shift in-house, Infobip will build on the success of the flagship Shift Developer conference, especially in terms of setting new production standards, reducing complexity, and improving the overall quality of the event experience.
Additionally, it will provide Shift with the tools necessary to grow internationally, first to the United States and then to Latin America and Southeast Asia in the coming years, transforming the company from a profitable regional player to a global one.
“The last year has been the most difficult in the event industry’s history, and our ability to persevere and adapt has shown that we are prepared to expand and evolve, even faster than anticipated. With the backing of Infobip, we increase the growth potential by an order of magnitude,” Burazin explained.
To retain prominence, it is important to think beyond the conventional verticals.
Infobip, established in Croatia over a decade ago, has grown to over 60 offices on six continents, offering natively designed technology capable of connecting over seven billion mobile devices and ‘stuff’ in 190+ countries through over 800 telecom networks. The business collaborates with and represents leading mobile carriers, chat applications, banks, social networks, technology firms, and aggregators. Although regularly engaging with the developer community can seem self-evident, it represents a watershed moment for such an organization.
“Infobip is on a growth trajectory that will see it rapidly expand into the business-to-consumer (B2C) vertical, or more precisely, the business-to-developer (B2D) space. Having Ivan on board with his experience as the founder of Codeanywhere, a business-to-business SaaS company, and the creator of Shift, the region’s largest developer conference, would benefit us going forward,” the unicorn’s CEO Silvio Kutic said.
Apart from its external influence, the newly created developer experience department will deliver a variety of programs aimed at empowering internal Infobip developers, including content development workshops, open source time, and resources for developers interested in taking on a more public-facing position. Infobip has its sights set on the broader transition, pun intended, that the developer community will bring to the world, and they want to be at the forefront of it.