Oracle is acquiring Collective Intellect, a company offering a cloud-based social intelligence application, which helps companies understand and respond to consumers' conversations on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
The Collective Intellect acquisition, terms of which were not disclosed, will become part of Oracle's software as a service (SaaS) products and Social Platform business. The deal announced June 5 follows Oracle's acquisition May 23 of Vitrue, a cloud-based creator of social media marketing campaigns.
Oracle's rivals are also pursuing acquisitions in the social media marketing space.
Salesforce.com on June 4 announced the acquisition of Buddy Media for close to $700 million; Buddy Media helps businesses create and manage social media marketing campaigns. In March 2011, Salesforce.com acquired Radian6, a specialist in social media monitoring software, for $326 million.
With Collective Intellect, Oracle said it will enable marketing organizations to create more targeted marketing campaigns; help customer service teams respond quickly to customer feedback on social media; generate targeted leads for sales teams; and strengthen how companies build more effective brands using social media.
Collective Intellect offers Oracle its "semantic analytics platform," noted Don Springer, founder and chief strategy officer of the acquired company. "Creating meaningful content based on a clear understanding of consumers' conversations is the way brands will create stronger customer relationships."
Oracle has been aggressively acquiring cloud-based companies to complement its on-premise software products. Oracle made another social media-related acquisition in October 2011, with a $1.5 billion deal for RightNow Technologies, which offers a cloud-based customer relationship management platform that includes interacting with customers via social media.
The Collective Intellect deal helps Oracle build out its cloud strategy. Oracle CEO Larry Ellison famously dismissed cloud computing as "water vapor" and as "a computer connected to the Internet," during an appearance at the Churchill Club in San Jose, Calif., in 2009. He more recently came around to embrace cloud computing, calling it an "evolution, not a revolution" at the AllThingsD technology conference last week in Southern California, according to news reports.
Oracle rival SAP is also building a portfolio of cloud-based acquisitions. In May, it announced the $4.3 billion buyout of Ariba, a provider of a cloud delivered procurement application and transaction network.