Why Microsoft Might Buy CRM Giant Salesforce

Rumors around a Salesforce takeover are heating up. After a swirl of chatter last week about Oracle being a likely suitor for the company, the talk has now turned to Microsoft as a possible buyer for the customer relationship management giant.

Salesforce shares climbed on Tuesday afternoon on the speculation that Microsoft could buy the company. Neither Microsoft nor Salesforce could immediately be reached for comment.

Along with Microsoft and Oracle, Google and SAP are among the names analysts are tossing around as possible suitors. In fact, it may have been OracleEUs move to raise $10 billion that started all the rumors and Oracle could be the frontrunner in the race to acquire Salesforce.

Taking .NET Devs into the Cloud

We asked Chuck Ganapathi, former senior vice president for Salesforce and founder and CEO of business productivity tool builder Tactile, to get his take on the Microsoft rumors. He told us a Microsoft acquisition of Salesforce makes a lot sense for two reasons.

First, Microsoft lost the platform wars. As the original platform company, enterprise IT departments would have proudly called themselves EUMicrosoft shops,EU he said. Now, however, .NET and Azure have since been trumped by Java, Linux and open source, and more recently the cloud platforms, he added.

EUThe days of the Microsoft developer certification being a badge of honor to developers are long gone. Their best option would be to buy Amazon Web Services, but thatEUs not going to happen,EU Ganapathi said. EUBuying Salesforce is a lot more realistic.EU

Certainly, the Salesforce platform is one of the fastest growing enterprise IT platforms by all measures -- number of customers, number of transactions, number of developers, and number of apps. Microsoft is good at building developer tools and if the company marries those with SalesforceEUs cloud platform, Ganapathi said it could be a way for Microsoft...

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