Ahead of this afternoon's FQ3 report, and in tandem with the start of the company's annual Dreamforce conference, Salesforce (CRM -2.8%) has announced the acquisition of cloudconnect, a startup that was founded by Adam Gross, once the co-founder of Salesforce's Heroku cloud app platform (PaaS) unit. Cloudconnect will be joining Heroku; GigaOm thinks the acquisition is tied to the pending launch of Heroku1, a new version of the platform specifically meant to build and run apps interacting with Salesforce's apps.
The deal coincides with the launch of Salesforce 1, a common platform for building apps for Heroku, Force.com (focused on simpler enterprise cloud apps), and ExactTarget Fuel (used to create online marketing apps that work with ExactTarget's offerings). Salesforce is promising a giant number of APIs for Salesforce 1, and compatibility with existing apps.
Heroku is a giant in the PaaS space (2.7M apps deployed as of February), and Force.com (360K as of February) isn't doing badly either. Both face competition from Microsoft, Red Hat, EMC/VMware's Pivotal unit, and others. IDC recently forecast the PaaS market will grow at nearly a 30% CAGR from 2013-2017, leading it to ultimately be worth over $14B.
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