Salesforce on Azure may sound implausible, but in the wake of a similar deal with Oracle, rumor has it the two companies are talking.
Microsoft and Salesforce.com are hammering out a deal that will bring Salesforce applications to Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.
[Editor's note: Microsoft and Salesforce.com formally announced their deal after this story was published. Contrary to the rumor, the partnership will not see Salesforce apps on Azure. Read Microsoft, Saleforce.com Make Nice, Marry Apps.]
Any deal between Salesforce and Microsoft would mark a big change in a chilly relationship between the two companies. Microsoft sued Salesforce.com for patent infringement in 2010, and Microsoft's Dynamics applications unit has aggressively positioned and priced its CRM application to go up against Salesforce. What's more, Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff has also been a frequent critic of Microsoft, although those criticisms have cooled somewhat since Satya Nadella was named Microsoft's CEO in February.
A deal between Salesforce and Microsoft wouldn't be a complete surprise given last year's first-ever partnership between Oracle and Microsoft. That deal brought Oracle applications, middleware, and database services to Azure. And earlier this month, Microsoft and longtime partner SAP announced that SAP enterprise applications will soon be available on Azure.
Salesforce doesn't want to be left off that list, and Microsoft is clearly growing its cloud platform with popular application choices rather than favoring its Dynamics unit with exclusivity. Dynamics applications include CRM as well as AX, GP, and NAV ERP applications.
Oracle, SAP, and Salesforce applications are all used in combination with Microsoft desktop applications and, frequently, infrastructure software, so why not extend co-existence into the cloud era? It could be that management changes at Microsoft opened up door to warmer relations with Salesforce.com.
When it comes to managing data, don't look at backup and archiving systems as burdens and cost centers. A well-designed archive can enhance data protection and restores, ease search and e-discovery efforts, and save money by intelligently moving data from expensive primary storage systems. Read our The Agile Archive report today. (Free registration required.)
Doug Henschen is Executive Editor of InformationWeek, where he covers the intersection of enterprise applications with information management, business intelligence, big data and analytics. He previously served as editor in chief of Intelligent Enterprise, editor in chief of ... View Full Bio
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security EnterpriseTo learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
2017 State of IT ReportIn today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.