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CRM NEWS: Salesforce acquires ExactTarget for $2.5bn

Salesforce, the cloud computer company, has announced that it will buy ExactTarget, a marketing software company, for $2.5 billion.

It has been reported that the deal has been unanimously approved by the boards of both companies and is expected to be finalised by the end of July.

In a press release Salesforce said: "By combining ExactTarget’s leading digital marketing capabilities with’s leading sales, service and social marketing solutions, will create a world-class marketing platform across email, social, mobile and the web."

Forrester analysts Rob Brosnan and Shar VanBoskirk said in a blog post: “Salesforce's sales and service products do not extend ET's core offering. Indeed, the acquisition likely will slow down the already much-needed unification of the disparate technologies and data structures underlying ET's email, Audience Builder, Automation Studio, Social Engage, and mobile products. Integration with Salesforce is likely to take precedence over unification in the near term”

Meanwhile Brad Wilson, CEO, Emailvision — Salesforce's competitor in relationship marketing and customer intelligence — commented: “Today’s acquisition validates the importance of cloud marketing platforms to businesses today. Getting the right message at the right time to customers across every channel – email, social, web, and more — has become a core requirement for marketers today. 

"The net effect for us is that, in addition to our own direct sales efforts across Europe, America, and Asia, Emailvision will continue to partner with large players like Microsoft and SAP to help them deliver these capabilities at scale to their customer as well.”