Salesforce spent roughly $75 million on the three startups it acquired last quarter, according to a regulatory filing submitted Friday.
alesforce spent $32.8 million on MetaMind, the natural language processing and image recognition startup it bought in April. It spent an additional $41.6 million on two other companies it didn’t name, but they are likely PredictionIO and Implisit Insights.
This is the first time Salesforce publicly disclosed the financial details of these deals. Salesforce’s spokesperson wasn’t immediately available for comment.
One interesting nugget from the MetaMind acquisition is that Salesforce recorded $31.2 million in goodwill, which represents the amount paid for the company beyond what’s valued on the balance sheet. That means Salesforce paid a 95% premium to the book value of MetaMind’s tangible assets.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff was one of the early investors of MetaMind.
Salesforce has been scooping up a number of startups in the machine learning and artificial intelligence space lately. Besides these three startups, it also bought MinHash and TempoAI last year, both aimed at making Salesforce more predictable and smarter. On top of that, it spent $390 million on predictive analytics software maker RelateIQ in 2014.
All this is part of Benioff’s drive to turn Salesforce into a much smarter, data-driven software. During Salesforce’s most recent earnings call, Benioff reiterated this vision, saying Salesforce’s next growth-engine will come from artificial intelligence. He said:
When I look at kind of the next major trend for Salesforce and our industry that will drive tremendous growth is got to be artificial intelligence. And as we look out into the future and we start to look at extreme improvement and advances in artificial intelligence whether it’s machine learning, whether it’s deep learning, whether it’s machine intelligence itself, I think that those kind of capabilities appearing inside our applications that is going to be a major growth capability going forward.
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