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It's Official: Microsoft to Acquire Yammer for US$1.2 billion Cash

Oh how the smell of money draws us in. Really, who could stare at US$ 1.2 billion and walk away? Yammer has agreed to that nice tidy sum and joins Microsoft's ranks. Everyone has a thought on it, and it isn't all nice.

The Yammer /Microsoft Story

According to the companies, Yammer is joining the Office Division and the team will continue to report to David Sacks, Yammer CEO. It will continue to develop standalone applications, but will also be integrated with the likes of SharePoint, Office, Skype and MS Dynamics CRM.

That's the gist of this story.

According to David Sacks in a blog post:

With the backing of Microsoft, our aim is to massively accelerate our vision to change the way work gets done with software that is built for the enterprise and loved by users."

Now I know this is no surprise as it's been around the block "unofficially official" for a week or so now, and we really aren't getting much more information other than it is "official" and it's subject to "regulatory approvals".

The Industry Point of View

I've been saving some of these for this day, because they comments from the vendors in the industry are nothing short of interesting:

Microsoft’s acquisition validates the critical nature of social connectivity as an enterprise capability. If over the coming years MSFT is able to build out a fuller capability, they and the companies that invest in this technology might see a return on their investment. What the market needs to know is that fuller capabilities are available now, and that companies that use them are already getting a functional and financial benefit from the full-featured enterprise collaboration software that Moxie delivers today.” – Tom Kelly, CEO of Moxie Software.
Social is an increasingly important driver in Enterprise collaboration, and Microsoft’s reinvestment in SharePoint and acquisition of Yammer will further accelerate this. What Yammer could bring to SharePoint is rich collaboration functionality and better access via desktop, mobile, cloud and tablet apps, all of which will further accelerate SharePoint usage and adoption. The deal also plays into a growing trend of integrating social applications into the SharePoint platform — such as TripIt, Amazon, SlideShare, Twitter apps, Quest Web Parts, etc.

But although people will want to move, they’ll be waiting to see the “upgrade” path from SharePoint 2013 to SharePoint 2013+Yammer. It would take a herculean effort to get Yammer integrated into the next SharePoint release, so as a backup option it’s likely there will be an improved integration pack at the time of release. Bottom line; the benefits and implementation timeline of SharePoint plus Yammer must be made crystal clear to SharePoint customers because if it’s not, it’s possible they’ll wait a year, or, worse, until Wave 16 (SharePoint 2016).” — Chris McNulty, Quest Software
Microsoft has been deluding itself into believing SharePoint plays in the social space, arguably the most important market in software in the last decade," said Aaron Fulkerson, founder and CEO MindTouch. "Microsoft acquiring Yammer will make them relevant in the social space, but their lack of execution is forcing them to pay a premium."
Microsoft probably sees Yammer as an opportunity to ride the ‘social’ wave without much effort. When Microsoft acquired Skype it wasn’t because the company didn’t already have homegrown VoIP software (they have Lync, previously known as Office Communications Server). They purchased Skype because they didn’t have a recognizable brand or the users behind it. Microsoft already has some of Yammer’s functionality built into its 11-year old clunky (and expensive) SharePoint product. And let’s not forget doomed Microsoft OfficeTalk, which was Microsoft’s answer to Yammer a few years ago before it faded into obscurity without much talk. — from a Huddle post by Aaron Endre

And a couple of Tweets of interest:

"MyPOV: After years of less than stellar enterprise adoption of SharePoint, MS can now use Yammer as a hook from freemium to premium

 

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