Salesforce has not been shy about acquiring companies this year: Quip for $750 million, DemandWare for $2.8 billion, and Krux for $700 million come to mind.
To hear Twitter in the mix, then, is not terribly surprising. It’s certainly a larger deal—Twitter is valued at more than $11 billion even after a steady decline—and the social network isn’t as obvious a fit as some other companies, but Salesforce didn’t earn its “Innovator of the Decade” title without making bold decisions.
In a CNBC interview with Marc Benioff, the CEO says innovation must come both organically—from within the company—and inorganically through acquisitions. Einstein, for example, would not have come to be so fast without key acquisitions, such as MetaMind.
Speaking to Jim Cramer at Dreamforce in downtown San Francisco, Benioff says Salesforce looks at all deals but follows through with only the best synergies. He told Cramer that Twitter is a “great and exciting product” but has “very severe challenges.”
Disney, Google, and Apple have all lost interest in the struggling Twitter. Salesforce remains the only legitimate contender still in the mix, but refuses to comment further on speculation—for fear of, as Benioff put it, setting a precedent for all future acquisitions.
Some still question why Salesforce would even be interested in Twitter—the synergy there is not immediately obvious to most. In a Dreamforce session, Benioff touched on key points, such as how Salesforce customers all use Twitter to engage with their customers in real-time.