A software company needs to balance its offering -- if the focus is on back-office financials the company should build or buy CRM, and a CRM company should build or buy ERP. But the number of companies that succeeded at this approach is small: SAP (NYSE: SAP), Oracle (Nasdaq: ORCL) and Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT). This CRM Buyer report, which overviews Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff's discussion from Cloudforce 2011 and looks at topic of developing a front and back office strategy.
"One of the more revealing things I heard from Marc Benioff at Cloudforce 2011 in New York last week was his idea about how his company will continue to build out its product line. Marc's never been super secretive about his general direction, though product specifics have always been closely kept. But in our conversation, he reiterated a long-held belief that makes more sense than ever.
"For a long time, the natural assumption has been that a software company needs to balance out its offerings. So a company focusing on back-office financials should build or buy CRM, and a CRM company should build or buy ERP. But the number of companies that succeeded at this approach is small. Only a few companies I can think of actually succeeded in this, and they were all back-office software companies to start with."