Tag: Microsoft

Ralf HallerRalf Haller June 12, 2013

Marketing Services and Technology M&A

All working in ICT are well familiar with the constant M&A activities that happen in this industry.

What has been happening in the Marketing Services and Technology area though since 2011 seems to be breaking all records.

As Scott Brinker in his Marketing Technology blog summarized in January already:

The sector with the largest number of deals and the highest total value — by a large margin — was Marketing Services & Technology. There were 485 deals in that category with a total value of $20.5 billion, up 67% and 36%, respectively, over 2011. This sector accounted for 9 of the 30 largest deals of the year.

Now things are continuing and the end does not seem to be reached yet.

Latest M&As:

  • salesforce.com acquires ExactTarget, who acquired Pardot just recently
  • SAP acquires hybris, an e-commerce vendor
Nice to see that some are going it on their own like Marketo who did a successful IPO.
More M&As are to be expected though by Oracle, IBM, salesforce.com, SAP, and Microsoft.
Among these rumors are that salesforce.com might be up – for sale – as well…

Ralf HallerRalf Haller December 22, 2009

Biggest corporate R&D investors

I was quite surprised when I saw this chart today as there are a few companies in this top ten list of biggest corporate R&D investors that I would not have expected. I expected Toyota there, the Swiss pharmaceutical companies Roche and Novartis but for sure not GM and Ford. Guess they kept it a secret what they all do with this huge amount of R&D money. Also surprising was Nokia being ranked second even. Also here the pure amount of the investments says nothing about its quality and success.

Ralf HallerRalf Haller December 12, 2009

MacBook first-time user experience

On my trip to the US I could not resist the saving potential buying a MacBook. I got the lowest cost model as I did not see any real difference to a MacBook Pro and I looked into all the details. All in all with some software I saved about 500 USD compared with what I would pay in Switzerland. Not bad when the total amount was only 1500 USD.

Now after I set up all my SaaS links, imported my contacts, synced the calendar with the Mac iCal and put all my PC data onto a 2.5″ super small portable hard disk from where I will use it in the next few weeks whenever needed, I was ready to go. I did not think a VMware installation would be necessary to make the switch from Windows.

My first working experience was awesome. The screen is a beauty and so are every other detail. Hard to understand why it took me so long to switch.

The Safari browser is quite fast which is important for me since I have lots of software in the cloud. I don’t see the need for any other browser – sorry Chrome and Mozilla. Now I am thinking to maybe get MobileMe so my iPod Touch and MacBook stay automatically synced and data is stored in the cloud as well. The only thing I did linking me back to the MSFT world was to buy Office for Mac as I don’t think Apple’s office suite will guarantee 100% backwards compatibility to my long list of MSFT Office files. So that’s it. I think Apple will make life for MSFT, PC vendors and mostly mobile phone vendors a tough one in the coming years.

Ralf HallerRalf Haller July 24, 2009

How to check out quickly if Twitter is for you

Looks like Twitter is now becoming quite popular in Europe too. At first sight it seems like a waste of time for most people, but only if you take some time to check it out will you really know if that is true or not.

Here a list of the things you can do to get your feet wet:

Introductions: read the Twitterhandbook first, then you can also go through the new Twitter 101 for business. Also great tutorials can be found on Slideshare, which I recommend reading after these two introductions and after you have actually signed on and started using it already. There are more than 4,000 presentations on Twitter already uploaded. (a nice one is this here.)

Using your first apps: some apps you might want to install are Twitpic, which lets you upload pictures and also send them simply via e-mail. To start getting some discussion going you can try out TwttrStrm, which lets you post questions. You can also link to your Facebook account with twitter/badges. There are endless apps available. One recent one is Geo Chirp, which allows you to search for Twitter users locally.

Install on your mobile: to make things really neat you have to install a Twitter client on your mobile. I have tried a few apps on my iPod touch and all of them do the job quite well. It is more a matter of personal taste I think what app you pick: I use mostly TweetDeck now but Tweetie and Twitterrific are good choices too.

Only time will tell if Twitter is indeed the most initially undervalued business app or the most hyped up tool.

My feeling is that either Google or Microsoft might acquire them if not even Facebook, who seem to have some close links to them already.

Ralf HallerRalf Haller January 6, 2009

Apple “steals” ideas from Google and others and makes money with them…

Today’s keynote at the Macworld event was filled with new announcements and following it on CrunchGear in near real-time my mouth started watering and a decision that has developed over the last year came finally through: my next laptop will be a Macbook for sure. They are now light years ahead of Microsoft that I think not using a Macbook and its OS would mean a severe competitive disadvantage.

Now back to my heading. It is pretty obvious that Apple has stolen quite a few ideas from Google. The funny thing, though, is that while Google seems good at coming up with good new stuff only Apple is able to make money with it.  Google still today has “only” managed to commercialize its search and I do not think that they will ever be able to do anything else really – commercially speaking.

Here the list of things that I have seen Apple borrowing from its friends in Mountain View and others:

  • face detection in iPhoto (Picasa started that a few months ago)
  • GPS geotagging in iPhoto (a clear Google maps domain)
  • iMovie UI seems to be taken from Blackberry
  • iWork.com is clearly using ideas from Google’s iDocs
  • remote Keynote application app over Wifi on the iPhone is a copy of an existing app, i-Clickr, thanks guys!
  • over 75 million accounts linked to credit cards, aha, I can smell what is coming here soon, Amazon’s of the world fasten your seat belts

One nice thing that maybe has not been noticed as much as it should have due to its possible impact on the telecom industry: iTunes music store now works over 3G and offers the same pricing model. At last the mobile operators have a smile too on their 3G investments. Thanks, Apple.

Ralf HallerRalf Haller September 21, 2008

Don’t waste your marketing budget – like Microsoft does

Trying to appear as someone that you are not will always fail in B2B marketing. You will irritate rather than communicate if your marketing messages don’t reflect what you really are. To spend 300 million USD as Microsoft does it right now with ad campaigns won’t change that at all, in contrary, it is a total waste. As Seth Godin sums it up:Microsoft can change this if they want to, but until they do, running ads pretending to be something other than that is a waste of money.”