NEWS30 March 2011

Salesforce buys social media tracker Radian6 for $326m

News North America

US/CANADA— Canada’s Radian6, which produces social media monitoring tools, has been acquired by CRM business Salesforce for $326m in cash and shares.

Salesforce provides web-based tools for customer relationship management on a software-as-a-service basis, calling itself “the enterprise cloud computing company”.

The company says that integrating Radian6 will allow it to provide “real-time social intelligence”. Clients will be able to access data on social media chatter from the public web through CRM and sales software, as well as through their businesses’ internal social networks.

Radian6 already has a deal with ComScore whereby the web audience researcher offers the social media monitoring service to its clients.

Salesforce chairman and CEO Marc Benioff said: “Not only will this acquisition accelerate our growth, it will extend the value of all our offerings.”

The company paid around $276m in cash and $50m in stock to buy Radian6. On top of that, around $10m in stock and $4m in cash will be paid to Radian6’s founders – subject to conditions over two years. The acquisition has the approval of Radian6’s board and is expected to close by the end of July.

Radian6’s CEO Marcel LeBrun (pictured) said the company will continue to operate independently and that relationships with existing clients – who include Dell, Kodak and PepsiCo – won’t be affected.

Salesforce said that while cloud computing had initially been about cost, speed and convenience, the rise of social media meant the next phase in its development would be “inherently social, mobile and open”.