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Dorian Maillard, DAM Magister
Dorian Maillard, DAM Magister

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AI is revolutionising the USD12bn digital asset management industry

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Dorian Maillard, Vice President at DAI Magister, writes that by 2027, the digital transformation market will double, reaching USD3.9 trillion.

A staggering 90 per cent of the world’s data has been generated in the past two years, with the volume of digital data set to grow exponentially thanks to surging internet usage and digital content production, the adoption of AI, and widespread digitalisation across industries.

Amidst this growth, Digital Asset Management (DAM) providers are becoming indispensable, offering a centralised, secure, and efficient way to manage digital assets. Propelled by Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Natural Language Processing (NLP), and computer vision integrations, the DAM market is predicted to quadruple from USD4 billion today to over USD12 billion by 2030.This growth trajectory surpasses the rapid expansion of the broader digital transformation market, underscoring the growing importance of effective digital asset management in an increasingly data-centric world.

Key benefits of DAM

Digital Asset Management systems have transformed beyond their original function as simple storage spaces for marketing materials, emerging as vital tools for enhancing organisational efficiency. With the integration of AI, these platforms have been significantly upgraded, unlocking a host of advancements and capabilities that redefine their utility and impact.

Global scalability and integration

DAM systems are adaptable and designed for global scalability. They offer seamless integration capabilities with various organisational tools, encompassing content management systems, marketing platforms, and design applications. Such integrations facilitate the effortless transfer and management of digital assets across different platforms, minimising the need for manual intervention and enhancing organisational productivity.

Centralised asset repository

Digital Asset Management platforms offer a unified solution for organising and accessing a variety of digital content, ranging from images and videos to text documents and audio files. This centralisation is pivotal in eliminating the inefficiencies associated with scattered storage systems, ensuring consistent brand representation. Advanced search functionalities and metadata tagging capabilities expedite asset retrieval, streamlining workflows and boosting productivity.

Security

Leading DAM platforms prioritise digital security with advanced features such as Single Sign-On (SSO), strict access controls, and multi-factor authentication (MFA). 

Analytics and reporting

As the central hub of enterprise data management, DAMs can serve as a powerful data analytics and reporting tool that improves over time with ML capabilities.

AI technologies unlock new possibilities for the Digital Asset Management market

AI integration in DAM is poised to revolutionise digital asset management, bringing forth a new era of increased efficiency and user-friendliness, contributing to industry growth and evolution.

AI’s capacity to analyse user behaviour, preferences, and past interactions enables the delivery of tailored content suggestions, a feature invaluable to marketing and content creation teams for facilitating the discovery of critical assets with greater efficiency.

Beyond analysing user behaviour and preferences, advanced AI technologies such as computer vision automate the analysis of images and videos, facilitating effortless categorisation and retrieval of visual content.

Security and compliance are other vital areas where AI can considerably impact. The technology allows for active monitoring of access patterns, detects irregularities, and blocks unauthorised entries. AI’s ability to adhere to complex copyright and licensing rules makes DAM systems increasingly relevant in highly regulated sectors such as finance, healthcare, and legal services.

The DAM market is already consolidating

The recent surge in AI-driven innovation has catalysed significant consolidation within the DAM industry. Over the past three years, there’s been a marked increase in M&As, representing 60 per cent of the total Digital Asset Management M&A activity in the last decade, with acquirers evenly distributed between private equity-backed strategic players and Private Equity firms.

Recent M&As in this sector over the past three years suggest a shift in priorities. Company size seems less of a deciding factor in M&A decisions. Instead, there is an emphasis on technological innovation and the strength of SaaS business models.

Further consolidation is coming

Looking ahead, we anticipate that recent technological advancements and the availability of significant investment capital will continue to catalyse consolidation in the Digital Asset Management industry. While market consolidation has intensified over the past three years, driven by factors such as regional leadership and technological innovation, several indicators suggest this trend is far from over.

The DAM market is notably fragmented, with numerous global competitors valued below USD100 million, setting a clear path for further market consolidation. Despite challenges such as high transaction costs and growing regulatory scrutiny, particularly in the US, substantial dry powder reserves amounting to USD2.49 trillion as of mid-2023 provide a fertile environment for continued consolidation activities.

Given these factors, we anticipate a highly competitive M&A environment in the coming months. Competition will be fuelled by the scarcity of high-quality DAM solutions, as highlighted by a Gartner report citing only 19 significant DAM platforms. The rate of M&As will hinge on players’ appetite to establish market dominance and integrate relevant technologies into their solutions. That aside, an anticipated acceleration in these activities is likely when interest rates drop, fostering an advantageous climate for leveraged buyouts.

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