Salesforce.com representatives have quietly approached Oracle to see if it would buy the company for $75 a share, Tom Foremski reports. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison already owns a piece of Salesforce, but he's also an early investor in NetSuite, a rival service for online customer-relationship management. The offer, if true, would be a 47 percent premium over Salesforce.com's share price before this morning market opening.
It would also be a brutal comeuppance for Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff, who had a very public tiff with Ellison, for whom he worked at Oracle and once idolized. Benioff has since championed a "no software" marketing campaign aimed straight at Oracle; unlike Oracle's offerings, Salesforce.com does not require the installation of software. Selling to Oracle would require eating a lot of crow. Then again, if Benioff actually gets that price, it would cement his reputation as a consummate salesman. Perhaps that's worth an uncomfortable swallow. (Photo by Robert Scoble)