Acquisition Will Boost Cloud Software Vendor's Social Media Capabilities will acquire Radian6, a developer of technology for monitoring social media networks, for $276 million in cash and $50 million in stock, Salesforce said Wednesday.

Salesforce will use the Radian6 technology to enhance all its products, including its on-demand flagship Sales Cloud CRM application, as well as its Service Cloud and Chatter applications and cloud development platform, the company said.

"With Radian6, is gaining the technology and market leader in social media monitoring," said Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff in a statement. "We see this as a huge opportunity. Not only will this acquisition accelerate our growth, it will extend the value of all of our offerings."

Radian6's technology is used by businesses to monitor hundreds of millions of conversations every day on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, blogs and other online communities. Radian6's software includes a monitoring platform for tracking and analyzing social media traffic and a system for engaging with individuals and communities online.

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Salesforce and Radian6 already have a technology alliance relationship. Earlier this month Salesforce unveiled Service Cloud 3, a set of social contact center applications for monitoring social networks, blogs, forums and discussion groups. While Salesforce developed its own applications for linking the Salesforce CRM application with Facebook and Twitter, Service Cloud 3 uses a link through Radian6 to monitor other social Web sites.

Radian6 customers include Dell, Kodak and PepsiCo who use Radian6 to gain intelligence in real time from those sites, helping them understand what's being said about their brand, products, services and competitors.

The combination of Salesforce applications and Radian6 will specifically provide a bridge between conversations occurring on public social networks and the Chatter private social network for businesses, Salesforce said.

Salesforce and Radian6, based in Fredericton, Canada, have signed a definitive agreement affirming the acquisition deal. Salesforce expects to complete the acquisition sometime in its second quarter ending July 31, subject to regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.