Microsoft recently purchased social enterprise site Yammer for $1.2 Billion. Microsoft will treat Yammer – based in San Francisco – as a separate entity from its main business, but allow it to operate in conjunction with SharePoint, Office 365, Dynamics and Skype – all Microsoft products.
You might wonder what is Yammer exactly? And more importantly, why was Microsoft willing to pay more than $1 billion dollars for it? According to Yammer.com, “Yammer brings the power of social networking to the enterprise in a private and secure environment” and it is “…designed for company collaboration, file sharing, knowledge exchange and team efficiency.”
In other words, Yammer is akin to Facebook for business but with a file-sharing component that has become widely popular with sites such as Box.com and Dropbox.com. It allows messages to be sent, events to be created, as well as announcement posting.
Yammer was founded in 2008 and raised about $140 million in venture capital. It has more than 5 million corporate users and 80% of the businesses on the Fortune 500 list.
It remains to be seen if this was a wise investment on Microsoft’s part.