When I first heard that Salesforce had acquired Jigsaw I actually found it a bit of an eyebrow raiser. Ever since launch Jigsaw has had no shortage of controversy (see Jigsaw is a Really, Really Bad Idea by Michael Arrington). We’ll see if Salesforce does even more to quench those that find the service amoral.
But there is no question that the acquisition will be a boon to Salesforce users, such as myself and the others here at M5. The question will be how long it will take to integrate the two products closer. Over the years, Salesforce has gone from scrappy startup to slower moving entrenched player- something that is almost unavoidable with almost a billion in sales. But what is not excusable is that some parts of the product will languish for years before a refresh. So while Chatter gets ton of attention, the core Salesforce product gets outpaced by more agile players. Let’s hope Salesforce quickly leverages the Jigsaw team to continuously improve their core product.
Salesforce.com Acquires Jigsaw
Salesforce.com bought Jigsaw in a $142 million acquisition. Jigsaw, a business data provider, helps users store contact information, target audiences and generate leads. The cloud CRM enterprise bought Jigsaw in an effort to facilitate building contact lists in Salesforce databases.
Salesforce has optimized the process of tracking and communicating with customers, but the process of searching for, adding and organizing contacts still needed a bit of work. The acquisition of Jigsaw was a strategic move on Salesforce’s part to improve CRM and all other aspects of the sales process.
Jigsaw’s database is searchable based on companies and key employees, which is extremely valuable information for Salesforce users. Unlike Salesforce, Jigsaw aggregates information using crowd-sourcing. Crowd-sourcing is a method of data collection where individuals participate in creating and adding content. Using crowd-sourcing, Jigsaw is able to boast a database with contact information on more than 21 million professionals. The acquisition will help Salesforce users simplify the process of finding, purchasing, managing and integrating information into their Salesforce files. The acquisition should also provide opportunities for vendors to build new application based on the business information aggregated by Jigsaw.
The acquisition will combine the power of Salesforce’s suite of CRM platforms and Jigsaw’s cloud-based model for automating the collection of data. Jigsaw tools are already integrated with Salesforce, however, the acquisition will help Salesfoce clean and update contact information as well.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff explains a few benefits of the acquisition: “With Jigsaw, we’ll make it as easy as Wikipedia to source data, as easy as iTunes to buy data, and as easy as Facebook to stay updated as the data changes.”
Salesforce is changing the CRM game. With Jigsaw, the cloud CRM enterprise is making the entire sales process faster, easier and better.
April 21st, 2010 via Salesforce.com Acquires Jigsaw | We Blog CRM.