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Microsoft and Salesforce are reportedly looking to form a cloud partnership

Microsoft Azure could become more attractive to businesses that rely on Salesforce’s cloud-based customer management programs. The two companies are discussing a deal that would make some of Salesforce’s tools available to users of Microsoft’s cloud platform, Bloomberg reported today. In addition, Microsoft wants to integrate Salesforce data into Office applications. It would be an important move for Azure, which is currently lagging behind Amazon Web Services’ massive customer base. Putting some of Salesforce’s software on Azure would set Microsoft’s service apart from competitors like AWS and Google’s Cloud Platform, which don’t offer similar capabilities at the moment.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and Inc. (CRM) are planning to announce an agreement as soon as today that will enable customers of Microsoft’s cloud-computing service to use Salesforce’s enterprise software, said people familiar with the talks, signaling a thaw between two longtime rivals. The partnership will make Salesforce’s customer-management programs available on Microsoft’s Azure service, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are confidential. Salesforce will also commit to using Azure to host some of its own applications and will integrate data from Salesforce products into Microsoft’s Office programs, the people said. An agreement would mark a shift in what has sometimes been a fractious relationship between the two companies. In 2010, Microsoft sued Salesforce for patent infringement, setting off a countersuit before the companies settled later that year. Microsoft in 2005 also announced plans to “give Salesforce a very effective run for their money” with a competing product and in 2010 ran an anti-Salesforce ad campaign with the tagline “Don’t Get Forced.”

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Written by Lorie Wimble

Lorie is the "Liberal Voice" of Conservative Haven, a political blog, and has 2 astounding children. Find her on Twitter.

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