Salesforce.com to Buy ExactTarget Cloud-Marketing Platform for $2.5B

Salesforce.com, the customer relationship management and cloud-management platform company, is continuing its acquisition spree. The San Francisco, Calif.-based firm has announced it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase cloud-marketing platform ExactTarget for about $2.5 billion.

ExactTargetSalesforce.com, the customer relationship management and cloud-management platform company, is continuing its acquisition spree. The San Francisco, Calif.-based firm has announced it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase cloud-marketing platform ExactTarget for about $2.5 billion.

The purchase is expected to be finalized by July 31.

ExactTarget, headquartered in Indianapolis, IN, provides Software-as-a-Service digital marketing software for upwards of 6,000 companies including Nike, Gap, and Coca-Cola. The company, which has more than 400 digital marketing experts on staff, provides the tools for companies to reach customers via marketing automation across channels, including, Web, social media, mobile, and email.

According to a news release from Salesforce.com, its “acquisition of ExactTarget will further its mission of being the world’s leading CRM platform — one that enables companies to transform how they connect with their customers across sales, service, and marketing. By combining ExactTarget’s leading digital marketing capabilities with salesforce.com’s leading sales, service and social marketing solutions, salesforce.com will create a world-class marketing platform across email, social, mobile and the Web.”

After the acquisition is final, Salesforce.com customers will have access to ExactTarget’s marketing automation services, and ExactTarget clients will be able to use Salesforce.com’s services and customer relationship management platforms.

“Marketing was the fastest growing CRM category in 2012, growing at 21 percent (more than four times the software industry forecast norm in 2012),” said Yvonne Genovese, managing vice president, Gartner’s Marketing Leaders Research. “We believe this growth will continue and marketing will be the largest growing CRM category through 2017.”

The ExactTarget acquisition is expected to boost total revenue for Salesforce.com to $125 million. Salesforce.com’s 2014 revenue is projected to be around $4 billion, 30 to 31 percent higher than the previous year.

Salesforce also recently acquired links and file-sharing platform Clipboard, social media marketing platform Buddy Media, and tracking firm Radian6.