Though a company known for acquisition, Salesforce.com has somehow surprised the business world again: this time with its recent $2.5 billion deal to acquire all outstanding shares of Exact Target, a marketing software giant and Eustace Consulting partner. For $33.75 a share, SFDC is acquiring a range of valuable new clients, including Coca-Cola and Nike. The two companies already have a lot of cross-over, as Exact’s email marketing software works well with the inbound-inspired ideals of Salesforce. That said, although such a departure from SFDC’s traditional, “narrow” company acquisitions, CEO Marc Benioff said it was an essential one. In a recent Wall Street Journal interview he explained, “We needed to do something of consequence and we needed to do something strategic and we needed to do something now.”
With it’s acquisition of Buddy Media, Radian6, and now Exact Target–SFDC has many speculating about the future of its software. It is clear that the company seeks to expand its online marketing mileage, but to what end? Radian6’s power lies in it’s data prowess, allowing users to see the precise ROI of their social campaigns. Buddy Media is a social enterprise, allowing businesses to see exactly what is being said about their brand on social media. Combined, these tools have the power to dramatically change the way online retail works, giving leaders an unheard of level of social data on a platform that was once consider impossible to measure. The addition of Exact Target gives Salesforce “the full arsenal of marketing tools,” rendering it competitive with Hubspot 3. It will be interesting to watch the developments from both of these valued Eustace Consulting partners.
The acquisition was approved by both sides, according to Forbes, and is set to close by July 31st.
What are your thoughts on this development? Why do you think Salesforce sought the acquisition? Let us know in the comments!