Salesforce.com announced that it will spend $2.5 billion to acquire ExactTarget which will be the company’s largest purchase to date. ExactTarget’s customers include Coca-Cola, Nike, and The Gap and it ran a $21 million loss on $292 million in revenue last year.
“The CMO is expected to spend more on technology than the CIO by 2017,” said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO, salesforce.com. “The addition of ExactTarget makes Salesforce the starting place for every company and puts salesforce.com in the pole position to capture this opportunity.”
Both Marketo and Hubspot had been rumored as potential acquisition targets for Salesforce to add marketing automation functionality to their Marketing Cloud. Radian6 and Buddy Media were the first pieces of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud to provide social media marketing.
“Marketing was the fastest growing CRM category in 2012, growing at 21% (more than four times the software industry forecast norm in 2012),” said Yvonne Genovese, managing VP, Gartner’s Marketing Leaders Research. “We believe this growth will continue and marketing will be the largest growing CRM category through 2017.”
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