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5/30/2014
08:50 AM
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Microsoft, Salesforce.com Make Nice, Marry Apps

Salesforce apps will work with Office 365, Windows, Windows Phone. Microsoft keeps using ExactTarget. But don't expect Salesforce apps on Azure.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, left, and Saleforce.com CEO Marc Benioff.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, left, and Saleforce.com CEO Marc Benioff.

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brandonbruce
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brandonbruce,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/4/2014 | 10:45:35 AM
Great to see this partnership!
As a Salesforce Partner and Microsoft Partner, this is great news!  We just released Cirrus Insight using the Office 365 framework and Salesforce API.  Cirrus Insight integrates Salesforce with Office 365 (Outlook 2013 and Outlook Web App) on any device. For more information visit Cirrus Insight on the web.
D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
5/30/2014 | 5:22:16 PM
Re: Salesforce came out ahead in this deal
Salesforce still doesn't have a real private-cloud option for privacy- and governance-sensitive organizations. That Superpod offering with HP is strictly for $50-million-per-year elite customers. Azure could be an alternative private-cloud delivery platform with rich integration options, but you are absolutely correct that that would be very complicated to pull off. As long as it's growting at a double-digit pace, Salesforce has no reason to look for more cusotmers on somebody else's platform.
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
User Rank: Author
5/30/2014 | 3:50:08 PM
Salesforce came out ahead in this deal
It was too much to expect that Salesforce.com CRM applications would run in the Azure envrionment. There are too many proprietary technologies involved. I don't remember seeing Force.com's Apex on the list of languages supported under .Net. In that sense, the Salesforce cloud gains more than Microsoft Azure from this partnership. Links to Office apps will make Salesforce CRM more useful and more deeply embedded in organizations--more competitive. Microsoft will get continued use by thousands of Salesforce customers of one of its oldest cash cows. That's fine, but what it needs are big name users on Azure.  If I were Benioff, I would be full of praise....  Salesforce came out ahead in this deal.
jagibbons
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jagibbons,
User Rank: Ninja
5/30/2014 | 12:35:38 PM
Re: Growing Respect for Nadella
A strong leader will know when it is time to sacrifice or downgrade your own efforts to join the efforts of a competitor who is wildly successfull. This partnership demonstrates that, as does the relase of Office apps for the iPad. Both will hurt sales of some Microsoft products and services, but will grow sales of other. That is smart business, and shows that the new regime in Redmond is serious about making positive moves to benefit the company.
Somedude8
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50%
Somedude8,
User Rank: Ninja
5/30/2014 | 11:31:43 AM
Growing Respect for Nadella
I was a big skeptic of Nadella, but it seems like just about every week he does one more thing that just makes sense. In this case, backing integration of Office with Salesforce, which competes with part of the MS portfolio, previously would have been unthinkable. But in reality, its probably a very smart move.

+1 to Nadella for 'getting it'.
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
5/30/2014 | 11:09:40 AM
Re: Will "first steps" bring deeper partnership?
Doug, interesting insight re Benioff saying "first step." For him, this may be a case of keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
5/30/2014 | 10:46:46 AM
Not war or politics
When CEOs bicker and diss each other, and each other's companies, you could find yourself thinking they are mortal enemies and that the divisions run deep. But much as it can sound like it, this is not war or politics. If companies can find a way to make a buck together, they can toggle from enemies to friends just about instantly.
D. Henschen
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50%
D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
5/30/2014 | 10:22:29 AM
Will "first steps" bring deeper partnership?
At several points during yesterday's joint conference call with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff used the words "as a first step," hinting that there might be more to come in this partnership. On Azure, for example, Benioff said Salesforce is exploring the use of that platform for things other than development and testing of ExactTarget applications (which have been built on Microsoft technologies since the start of that company). There's no telling where it might lead, but you get the feeling there will be more to it than accessing Office documents from within Salesforce and tapping into Salesforce data from within cloud, mobile, and desktop Office apps.
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