Microsoft picks up CRM expertise through Canadian acquisition


Microsoft Corp. has snapped up a Saskatchewan company to incorporate its core technology into its Dynamic CRM.

The software giant recently announced it will acquire the product business of Adxstudio Inc. of Saskatoon, which has been focused on delivering web-based solutions for Microsoft Dynamics CRM with application products that include Adxstudio Portals and Adxstudio ALM toolkit. Adxstudio Inc. will be spinning off its professional services division to form a new company, Adoxio Business Solutions, and said the transition will transpire over the next couple of weeks.

Microsoft Business Solutions service lead Bill Patterson said the professional services business will be an independent entity from Microsoft while it acquires the products and technology of Adxstudio as well as the core product team from its innovation, including the CTO and founder.

Adxstudio’s technology focuses on helping organizations take key business processes, such as sales and partner relationship management, and pushing them to the Web. Patterson said CRM systems have been evolving over the past few years, originally focused on employee-facing services. “That was the first generation of CRM systems.”

The rise of customer-centric, social CRM that includes features such as chat and use of social media means companies need to invest in the customer-facing side of CRM. “We call more of a customer engagement strategy.”

Adxstudio had been building out web-facing CRM for customers based on Dynamics CRM for some time, and the synergies meant an acquisition made sense, said Patterson. “Now that Adxstudios is part of Microsoft we can further those systems. “Because Adxstudio has already built on Dynamic CRM, our customers are really already one and the same.”

Patterson said one of the benefits of acquiring a Canadian company is that they have a focus outside of the U.S. and bring with it a global sensibility as well play a key role in the strategy for Dynamics CRM going forward. “This is a natural evolution of the CRM platform.”

He added the Adxstudio can web-enable much any business process, so its technology could be use be used for other applications besides CRM, such as citizen engagement tools.

According to research firm Gartner, CRM had sales in excess of US$23 billion in 2014, and it is forecast to reach $36.5 billion by 2017. Salesforce leads the market with a share of 18.4 per cent. Microsoft takes the fourth spot at 6.2 per cent. However, market share can change if broken down into nice categories, such as sales force automation.




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