Salesforce has acquired enterprise-focused ecommerce platform Demandware in a deal worth $2.8 billion, net of cash acquired, with Salesforce offering $75 per share for all outstanding shares.
“Demandware is an amazing company — the global cloud leader in the multi-billion dollar digital commerce market,” explained Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO at Salesforce, in a statement. “With Demandware, Salesforce will be well positioned to deliver the future of commerce as part of our Customer Success Platform and create yet another billion dollar cloud.”
Founded out of Burlington, Massachusetts in 2004, Demandware offers a cloud-based ecommerce platform and related services to retailers and manufacturers around the world. Clients include Design Within Reach, Lands’ End, L’Oreal, and Marks & Spencer. Demandware went public in 2012, trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and raising $88 million in its IPO.
Through this acquisition, Salesforce says it is extending its status as one of the preeminent forces in the customer relationship management (CRM) realm. What this really means is that Salesforce, one of the most valuable cloud computing companies in the U.S., is expanding into ecommerce and will now offer a new product known as “Salesforce Commerce Cloud.” This will effectively be a straight name-swap with the existing Demandware Commerce Cloud service.
Thomas Ebling, Demandware president and CEO, had this to say about the acquisition:
The Demandware mission is to empower retailers to engage and inspire consumers, enhance brand value and grow profitably. We expect to accelerate that mission as the Salesforce Commerce Cloud. When the transaction closes, Demandware will become an integral part of the Salesforce world-class Customer Success Platform. Demandware customers will be able to leverage the platform to deliver a more comprehensive, personalized consumer experience throughout the entire customer lifecycle, while Salesforce customers will gain access to the Demandware leading enterprise cloud commerce solution.
Salesforce is no stranger to acquisitions, having snapped up dozens of companies over the past decade. In 2016 alone, it has bought and shuttered deep learning startup MetaMind, as well as machine-learning startup PredictionIO.
The Demandware transaction, which is expected to close in Q2 of Salesforce’s 2017 fiscal year (running from May through July 2016), represents Salesforce’s biggest acquisition to date. The next biggest was cloud marketing company ExactTarget, which sold for an eye-popping $2.5 billion back in 2013.