Rumours emerge of Salesforce takeover

In what would be the largest software takeover is history, the rumour mill is in full swing. Oracle, Microsoft, SAP or Chinese whispers - place your bets...

Salesforce could be an acquisition target for an unnamed suitor, which could mark the most significant software acquisition in history.

According to a Bloomberg report, the CRM market leader is working with financial advisers to help it field takeover offers. There are only a handful of companies with both the resources and the incentive to buy: Microsoft, Oracle and SAP.

According to analysts, Oracle is the most likely candidate, as it continues its mission to become a key player in the cloud.

“Oracle is desperate to establish itself as a leader in the cloud,” Daniel Ives, analyst at FBR & Co. wrote in a research note. “And acquiring the leading cloud company and bringing on board a visionary leader in Marc Benioff would help toward accomplishing this goal.”

However, in a press conference today, Oracle CEO Safra Catz extinguished some of the excitement, saying: “If Salesforce is acquired by somebody else, it is probably good for us.” While the language suggests that Oracle is not the mystery suitor, she was also clear that her company had ‘never had a deal leak’.

All three possible suitors have their own CRM products but Salesforce continues to lead the pack and would be a major asset for any buyer. The San Francisco-based company is going from strength to strength with a current market cap of about $49.26bn. Oracle meanwhile has a market value of $194bn.

Bloomberg made it clear that the report was based on hear say and there was no certainty that a deal would transpire, but it was enough for shares in Salesforce to jump 11.6%.

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