Siebel closes UpShot acquisition, plans merged product

Less than one month after announcing plans to buy hosted CRM (customer relationship management) software maker UpShot, Siebel Systems has sealed the deal.

Siebel paid US$50 million in cash, with another $20 million to be paid over the next year if certain targets are met. The software vendor hopes to use UpShot's base of around 1,000 customers to jump-start its entry into the CRM-as-a-service market. Siebel announced last month a partnership with IBM Corp. to launch Siebel CRM OnDemand, scheduled to be rolled out sometime before the end of the year.

Siebel said it will work to merge its hosted CRM system and UpShot's, now called Siebel CRM OnDemand UpShot Edition. UpShot customers will, however, be allowed to continue indefinitely with that edition, Siebel said.

UpShot's rivals have been circling the company ever since the buyout's announcement. CRM ASPs (application service providers) Salesforce.com and Salesnet both have campaigns underway aimed at convincing UpShot customers to migrate to their systems instead of Siebel's.

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