Salesforce.com CEO Mark Benioff

Salesforce said to be fielding buyout offers

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Salesforce.com CEO Mark Benioff. (Image: IDGNS)

30 April 2015

Salesforce is working with financial advisors to field bids after being approached by an unnamed party about a possible buyout, according to a Bloomberg report.

The cloud-based CRM (customer relationship managment) company has a market value of more than $40 billion. It could be the largest software acquisition ever, according to Bloomberg.

The report cited unnamed sources and did not name any potential bidders. There is no guarantee a deal will come together, the sources told Bloomberg.

Spurred by the approach of a potential acquirer, Salesforce has hired financial advisers to help it field such offers, according to the Bloomberg report, which was based on anonymous sources. The company’s stock closed up 11.6% on the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, giving it a market capitalization just north of $47 billion.

Salesforce did not respond to a request for comment.

“You’d have to ask who could afford it, and who could get it done,” said Michael Fauscette, a group vice president with IDC. “The afford list is maybe: IBM, Oracle, SAP, Apple, Microsoft.”

In the “who could get it done” category, however, the list is much shorter. “IBM might seem like a logical choice, but I wonder if the fairly new CEO could pull it off – and whether [Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff] would let that happen,” Fauscette added.

IDG News Service

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