Twitter buys social analytics firm with Toronto roots

Twitter Inc. has acquired yet another small start-up with its purchase of San Francisco-based social analytics firm BackType.

The company, which lets publishers and media organizations use an API to search and track their brand recognition on a variety of social media sites, was created by University of Toronto students Chris Golda and Mike Montano in 2008.

One of BackType’s products, BackTweet, is specifically geared at giving customers insight into the reach of their tweets and how they covert to Web traffic, sales and other KPIs. The BackTweet API is used by companies such as Edelman, Time Magazine, AOL, and Microsoft.

“We’ll be bringing our team and technology to Twitter’s platform team, where our focus will be developing tools for Twitter’s publisher partners,” BackType said in a release.

For Twitter, acquiring BackType’s technology to process and analyze Twitter sentiment in real time could also give it another tool in its quest help it generate more information to sell to marketers.

The social networking giant’s purchase comes hot on the heels of its recent acquisition of third-party Twitter client, TweetDeck.

As for the future of BackType, the company said that while BackTweet will be available to current users as a free service, the product will no longer be accepting any new registrations going forward. The BackType team added that it will be focusing on its future work with Twitter and will eventually discontinue BackType and its API services.

BackType’s employees will relocate to the Twitter offices in San Francisco. Financial terms of the deal were left undisclosed.

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