Welcome to May’s edition of the Salesforce News Roundup, bringing you the latest news from the Salesforce Ecosystem. As per usual, a lot of exciting happenings have been going on in our little Industry. The interested party in buying Salesforce has been revealed, the biggest Salesforce pure play consulting firm in Europe has been acquired and Salesforce have hosted the UK’s biggest ever software convention in London. Let’s dive into the Takeover rumours!
Since roughly a month ago our newsfeed have been filled up with rumours about how Salesforce was in talks with another software company regarding a takeover. There were a few names flying around including Oracle, Google, Microsoft & SAP. CNBC has revealed on Friday last week that they can confirm Microsoft was the interested party. They reported that Microsoft & Salesforce were in talks about a purchase of Salesforce by Microsoft but talks have since fizzled out. Microsoft was prepared to offer a whopping $55 billion but Benioff is said to have kept raising his expectations to as high as $70 billion.
Tquila, Europes biggest pure play Salesforce consultancy has been acquired by Accenture. Founded only in 2010, Tquila has grown from a few people to over 100 skilled Salesforce specialists that Accenture has seen fit to expand their growing Salesforce operations in and around Europe. Accenture, who only had around 85 Salesforce consultants in the UK before this acquisition have now more than doubled their practise. Mark Wakelin, CEO of Tquila, said: ““Being able to offer deep technology skills coupled with industry-experience at scale is critical to getting ahead in the market. As one of the largest pure-play Salesforce partners in Europe we have those skills and Accenture has the scale.”
For another year running, the Salesforce World London was a resounding success. Something that I personally, and the whole industry had been looking forward to for months. SFWT London is actually the 2nd largest Salesforce conference after Dreamforce and the largest (no)software conference the UK has ever seen. The Excel London hosted 14,000 registered attendees with over a million watching online. Keith Block, Salesforce’s vice-chairman hosted the Keynote speech will really looked to inspire customers and partners from all over Europe to drive customer interaction with the Customer Success Platform. We also got to witness one of the cheesiest but brilliant entrances by Block (Think Tux, London’s most famous Landmarks and James Bond). Overall it really did was it goes out to do, inspire, engage and bring together the whole Salesforce community in EMEA. CBR Online do a great review of SFWT London here.
With the mystery uncovered about which giant software vendor is looking to purchase Salesforce, SAP CEO Bill McDermott has stepped forward to give his view on what is going on in the industry. “We have never bought something that we thought was impaired or on the decline or actually commoditised, and therefore have zero interest in. Nor have we ever had any interest in , so let’s just take that off the table.” – Strong words from McDermott. Benioff was clear on last weeks quarterly earnings call that beating SAP was on his to do list after achieving 10 billion in revenue (and being the fastest company to do so. SAP are currently the biggest maker of application software in the world and Oracle have been trying to beat them since 1999. Marc Benioff later finished talking about SAP with this statement -“The only innovation SAP has is in rhetoric. They should try writing some software.”
The CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) space is a fierce one. With Apttus & Steelbrick offering CPQ systems both natively built on the Salesforce platform, receiving investment from Salesforce recently, its tough competition. Steelbrick have announced last week that they have joined forces with Zuora who are one of the leaders in subscription management. Quote-to-Cash is another terms that is thrown around a lot in the CPQ space and describes the process from start to finish of quoting the customer and then managing the subscription. Unlike Apttus who have a series of products that provide this, Steelbrick & Zuora’s new partnership allow them to offer this together.