Technology giant Microsoft Inc has finally acquired business social networking site Yammer for £770 million in cash.
The deal will help Microsoft to boost their enterprise social networking (ESN) capabilities in their flagship product Office and Sharepoint and also other collaboration products.
The first news about the deal came about two weeks back when a possible acquisition was hinted by the Redmond giant. Microsoft has been working hard on their enterprise social networking platform for a long time and have earlier embedded their search engine Bing inside Facebook.
How is Yammer different? Yammer is strictly a business social networking site which verifies a valid business email identification for users to join. Founded in 2008, the company grew at a rapid rate attracting more than £100 million in investor funding.
Yammer CEO David Sacks will continue to lead the company which is now part of Microsoft’s Office Division. The strict user registration gave Yammer an edge over it’s competitors Jive Software, NewsGator, Socialtext and Tibbr.
Enterprise Social Networking (ESN) software provide similar features and capabilities like social networking sites Facebook and Twitter, except that they are tailored for workplace use. Employee profiles, activity streams, document sharing, discussion forums, idea generation software, microblogging, tagging, rating and reviewing are the salient features of an ESN.
The integration details of Yammer into Microsoft’s communication and collaboration products have not been revealed yet but the company emphasized that it will stick to it’s commitment to simplicity and cross-platform experiences.
Yammer is used by approximately 5 million corporate users and is used by more than 85% of the Fortune 500 companies.