Salesforce is on the roll as the enterprise cloud-computing company announced that it has acquired Heroku, a company that offers Ruby application platform-as-a-service (PaaS), for $212 million cash, just a day after releasing Database.com, the first cloud-based enterprise database.
Heroku offers a platform to create Ruby language based apps and is currently being used to develop apps for social network and mobile phones. Currently Heroku powers more than 105,000 applications.
Apart from $212 million in cash the deal also includes Salesforce granting restricted stocks valued at $27 million to Heroku employees and will pay around $10 million in cash for unvested Heroku shares.
Heroku was founded in 2007 and according to TechCrunch has raised only $13 million in funding and had received seed funding from Y Combinator in 2008.
Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO of Salesforce.com said: The next era of cloud computing is social, mobile and real-time. I call it Cloud 2, addiing that Ruby is the language of Cloud 2, and Heroku is the leading Ruby application platform-as-a-service for Cloud 2 that is fueling this growing community. We think this acquisition will uniquely position Salesforce.com as the cornerstone for the next generation of app developers.
Ruby language has currently 1 million developers and includes names like Hulu, Groupon and Twitter who have built apps using this language. Ruby is an open-source; object oriented programming language and works across multiple platforms such as DOS, Windows and Mac.
Salesforce's purchase of Heroku compliments its Chatter Free product which was launched on Tuesday, a collaborative tool built around Facebook's social invitation model.
Heroku platform features a workflow and interface designed to mirror how developers work. Because the platform is a service, there are no virtual machines to manage, no software to install, and no hardware to manage and tune. Developers can focus on writing their code, and Heroku takes care of everything else - from deployment to scaling and quality of service. It stated that 2,600 apps were added to the platform last week. According to The Register Heroku runs on Amazon EC2.
In the traditional form of creating and running an app in premises required significant resources like OS, database, middleware, servers etc. and human resources to monitor the app. Also developers were required who could navigate through virtual machines that required programming in J2EE and .NET. However, PaaS users get the infrastructure to run and test the apps on the cloud, thus eliminating cost of expensive infrastructure.
According to Salesforce the deal will close by the end of January 2011.