Salesforce buys Tableau for $15.7B to up its enterprise analytics game

Salesforce acquires Tableau Software in $15.7 billion deal

The Salesforce-Tableau deal signifies just how important data analytics and visualisation has become with the tech stack, and comes just one week after Google acquired Looker, another data analytics firm, paying US$2.6 billion in cash.

Salesforce has announced a multi-billion dollar deal to buy big data company Tableau Software.

"We are bringing together the world's number one CRM with the number one analytics platform", said Salesforce founder and co-CEO Marc Benioff.

Tableau has more than 86,000 customers, including tech heavyweights such as Verizon Communications Inc and Netflix Inc.

"With Tableau, Salesforce will play an even greater role in driving digital transformation, enabling companies around the world to tap into data across their entire business and surface deeper insights to make smarter decisions, drive intelligent, connected customer experiences and accelerate innovation", the company says.

The San Francisco-based company said the deal is likely to add up to $400 million in its 2020 revenue, but would decrease adjusted profit by about 37 cents to 39 cents per share.

Tableau will remain headquartered in Seattle and will continue to be led by CEO Adam Selipsky, a former Amazon.com Inc. executive who has been transitioning Tableau's software tools to cloud-based subscriptions.

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In the statement, both vendors also noted their community of users - 1.4 million Trailblazers on the Salesforce side, and 1 million data enthusiasts on Tableau's.

Following the acquisition by Salesforce, Tableau will operate independently under its own brand.

It's part of a "democratization of business intelligence" using software tools that work like "Microsoft Excel on steroids", Baird analyst Rob Oliver said, referring to the widely used spreadsheet tool. Tableau will also make Salesforce's Customer 360 and analytics capabilities stronger, allowing the company to reach more customers, it noted.

ExactTarget, purchased in 2013 for $2.5 billion, became Marketing Cloud; the $2.8 billion Demandware deal in 2016 yielded Commerce Cloud; and more recently, MuleSoft, bought a year ago for $6.5 billion, became the centerpiece of Integration Cloud. "I'm delighted that our companies share very similar cultures and a relentless focus on customer success".

Where does the IBM/Red Hat deal fit in the context of global and United States software M&A - according to Mergermarket data. Were thrilled to bring more robust data management solutions to our customers and look forward to welcoming the Looker team to Google Cloud, ” said Thomas Kurian, CEO of Google Cloud in a June 6 blog post announcing the acquisition. The company's revenue for the quarter was up 14.7% compared to the same quarter a year ago.

Salesforce has more than 1,100 staff in Ireland, where its operations had turnover a year ago of €971m. All are Salesforce customers.

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