Marketing software company Opal has filed a $50m lawsuit against its one-time partner, social media marketing startup Sprinklr, for stealing their technology.
Ok, so what are the deets?
According to the suit, the two companies had a “mutually beneficial” partnership that soured in 2016 after Opal client Paul Herman supposedly gave “administrative credentials” to a Sprinklr employee. Sprinklr then used the creds to view private info regarding Opal’s marketing software.
Opal claims that this systems breach enabled Sprinklr to begin developing a marketing product very close to their own — one that Sprinklr simply couldn’t have created had they not had access to Opal’s system.
Here’s where it gets really wonky: Paul Herman was at Nike when he allegedly gave away Opal’s info, but, in 2017, he joined Sprinklr full time — hmmm, interesting.
Sprinklr’s side of the story
The social media marketing company denies these allegations, as they reportedly signed a software integration deal with Opal in 2016, governing the use of the software so the companies could work together.
Call us crazy but, “use our tech so we can work together” is different than “use our tech to build your own”… no?
Though Sprinklr raised $105m last year at a valuation of $1.8B, start-ups operate on pretty tight margins, and a $50m dinger could potentially be a death sentence.
It all depends on how much of their funds are actually liquid, AKA that hard cashola.