ExactTarget becomes Salesforce’s biggest acquisition to date

Global enterprise software company Salesforce.com has made its largest ever acquisition by snapping up email marketing provider ExactTarget, while SAP has announced acquisition of ecommerce platform Hybris.

Best known for for its CRM offerings, Salesforce has practiced an aggressive acquisition strategy expanding its presence in social enterprise fields with the purchasing of Radian6 in 2011 and Buddy Media in 2012, among a long list of others exceeding 40 deals and US$4 billion over the last five years.

The purchase of ExactTarget for US$2.5 billion in cash is more than triple what it paid for Buddy Media, and signals a push in marketing automation tools to flesh out Salesforce as a comprehensive marketing software suite.

CEO Mark Benioff said a big move was needed to accelerate Salesforce’s growth plans. “We couldn’t just keep making these small acquisitions – that strategy was taking, honestly, too long. We need to work even harder to become number one in marketing,” he said on a conference call with analysts.


In other mergers and acquisition news, SAP has announced plans to acquire the rapidly-growing ecommerce platform Hybris.

The move by the global enterprise solutions firm will see it expand into delivering the next-generation ecommerce platform, with the choice of local or cloud deployment, as enterprises seek to optimise the customer experience for businesses and consumers across a growing number of delivery channels, devices and touchpoints.

“Hybris puts SAP on the leading edge of the consumer economy,” says Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe, co-CEOs of SAP AG. “With Hybris, SAP has made a decisive move to raise the stakes in customer relationship management and define the next generation customer experience.”