Speculation About Oracle Acquisition Drives Up Salesforce.com Stock - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // CIO Insights & Innovation
Commentary
2/11/2008
01:54 PM
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Speculation About Oracle Acquisition Drives Up Salesforce.com Stock

There's a good deal of chatter in the blogosphere today about Salesforce.com supposedly shopping itself to Oracle. Time will tell if anything comes of it, but back in November I posted five reasons I think Oracle will eventually buy Salesforce.com.

There's a good deal of chatter in the blogosphere today about Salesforce.com supposedly shopping itself to Oracle. Time will tell if anything comes of it, but back in November I posted five reasons I think Oracle will eventually buy Salesforce.com.The latest speculation on this topic was initiated by Tom Foremski, who recently posted on his Silicon Valley Watcher blog that a "reliable source" told him Salesforce.com has approached Oracle about buying it at $75 a share. I'm as dubious as anyone when it comes to acquisition rumors, but since Foremski has a source quoting an actual number, this one is a bit more interesting. The chatter gave Salesforce.com's stock a boost today, and at last look it was up more than $4 a share, to more than $55 a share.

I think Marc Benioff will sell Salesforce.com if he gets the right offer. The main question is, how badly does Oracle want Salesforce.com? Larry Ellison has admitted he's a still a bit stymied on how a company goes about making big bucks out of software as a service. And if Oracle buys Salesforce.com, where does that leave Ellison's own SaaS experiment, NetSuite?

Still, as I said in my previous blog post about this potential marriage, you can't deny the success and marketing prowess of Salesforce.com, even if it isn't making a ton of profit. If Oracle is really serious about SaaS -- and it's marketing people consistently claim to me that it is -- a Salesforce.com buy would be the surest way to make itself known as a SaaS player.

So here's my question to the CIOs and IT managers out there: Do you see a viable marriage in Oracle and Salesforce.com?

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