Salesforce.com Buying Social Marketing Vendor Buddy Media in $689 Million Deal

Salesforce.com is acquiring social media marketing firm Buddy Media in a US$689 million cash and stock deal, the companies announced Monday. The transaction is expected to close in Salesforce.com's third fiscal quarter, which ends Oct. 31.

Buddy Media counts Ford, Mattel and Hewlett-Packard among its approximately 1,000 customers, according to a statement. Its capabilities for delivering targeted marketing content through Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube will build on the social media monitoring technology Salesforce.com gained through last year's purchase of Radian6.

"With CMOs surpassing CIOs in spend on technology within the next five years, our Marketing Cloud leadership will allow us to capitalize on this massive opportunity," Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff said in a statement.

The announcement was not unexpected, coming about a week after an AllThingsD report that said the companies were close to an agreement. However, that report cited sources saying the acquisition price was above $800 million.

Salesforce.com's move also comes shortly after rival Oracle's purchase of Vitrue, a Buddy Media competitor.

Buddy Media and Salesforce.com executives are expected to discuss the acquisition further during a conference call Monday.

(More to follow).

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris's e-mail address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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