Bitter rivals Microsoft and Salesforce.com have decided to publicly bury the hatchet by announcing a global partnership agreement.
The deal will allow the Salesforce CRM apps and platform to connect to Microsoft Office and the Windows operating system, as well as the Windows Phone mobile OS.
Terms of the deal were not announced.
With the agreement, Microsoft users can now use Salesforce products from within their Microsoft environment. The companies revealed that from August, Salesforce1 will become available for Windows and Windows Phone 8.1, with general availability in 2015.
The deal also allows for the use of OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online as integrated storage options for Salesforce.
“We are excited to partner with salesforce.com and help customers thrive in a mobile and cloud-first world,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “Working together we’ll deliver new solutions that connect the customer insights of Salesforce to the cloud productivity of Office 365, the cloud platform of Azure and the mobility of Windows, so our customers can do more.”
“Today is about putting the customer first,” said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO, salesforce.com. “Together with Microsoft, we are building bridges that allow customers to be more productive.”
Other plans include the integration of Salesforce and Outlook, via the new Salesforce App. And Salesforce data will be connected to Excel and Power BI for Office 365 to help visualise information and find new insights.
The deal is remarkable, considering the two companies have for years been bitter rivals, with Salesforce’s Benioff using especially colourful language when speaking about Microsoft.
Indeed, Microsoft sued Salesforce back in 2010, alleging that its CRM service infringed nine Redmond patents. Salesforce countersued, before they both settled in the same year.
And in 2011, Microsoft sued to stop Matthew Miszewski, formerly the general manager of worldwide government at Microsoft, from joining Salesforce.
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