In a move that surprised everyone, Oracle today snapped up social media marketing company Vitrue. With this latest purchase, it’s become obvious that Oracle is looking to become the next Salesforce.
That’s funny, since Salesforce’s Marc Benioff originally hails from Oracle.
Vitrue lets marketing managers run campaigns on Facebook and other social media sites. They call their tech Social Relationship Management (SRM), because every technology needs an acronym. The tool let’s companies manage all of their social media sites from one spot — Tweets, blog posts, Pinterest pins, YouTube, Facebook updates and the like. It also lets them build interesting Facebook tab pages (to show off things like quizzes or games).
Oracle didn’t disclose the terms, but TechCrunch says it paid $300 million. That isn’t much by Oracle standards but was a decent valuation for Vitrue. The startup had raised $33 million and was on track to generate $100 million this year, says TechCrunch.
What’s interesting is why an old-school enterprise software company would buy a Vitrue at all. Answer: Oracle is serious about building out its Oracle Fusion Public Cloud and fast.
Oracle Public Cloud is a collection of apps that does things like customer relationship management (a la Salesforce.com), HR apps (gained when Oracle spent $1.9 billion to acquire Taleo) and intranet social tools (like Yammer or Saleforce’s Chatter).
Oracle, like SAP, is racing to convert itself into a cloud company because businesses don’t want to buy software the old way anymore — they want to rent it from the cloud.