Microsoft Offers Salesforce Customers $150 Per User To Switch
Microsoft is drawing a line in the sand — or in the cloud, depending on how you look at it. In a move timed to coincide with this week’s Dreamforce ’11 conference, Microsoft is straight up offering enterprises $150 per user for up to 50 users if they switch from Salesforce, Oracle, or SAP CRM to their Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online. Redmond says the rebate is intended to be used for things like migration services or cloud integration.
The word comes in the form of an official Q&A – titled “Microsoft Puts Stake in the Ground Versus Cloud Competitors” – Microsoft held with Corporate vice presidents Brad Anderson and Michael Park, “from the Management and Security Division and Business Solutions Division, respectively.”
Most of that question-and-answer session is, naturally, Microsoft shamelessly hyping its cloud strategy. A key message is that virtualization is not where Microsoft sees the cloud going, and is in fact just a stop on the road. And to that end, Anderson makes sure to mention his belief that VMware private clouds are four to ten times as expensive as a similar offering from Microsoft:
VMware’s private cloud solution, Cloud Infrastructure Suite, appears to be priced by adding either virtual machines or memory to run mission-critical applications, charging you more as you grow. Our private cloud solutions are licensed on a per-processor basis, which means customers get the cloud computing benefits of scale with unlimited virtualization and lower costs consistently and predictably over time. With Microsoft, as your workload density increases, so does your ROI. With VMware, as your workload density increases, so do your costs, which is kind of counter to the promise of the cloud.
And going back to the news of that promotional rebate, Microsoft’s Park highlighted what he saw as the key benefits of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online over Salesforce.com:
Microsoft is the only vendor that gives customers a choice in how they deploy the software, with a fully functional public, private and hybrid cloud offering. Salesforce.com customers that want private cloud solutions to meet technical, regulatory or business policy requirements are simply out of luck.
The other aspect to Microsoft’s competitive edge, Park said, is that Dynamics CRM Online works with the whole Microsoft ecosystem, from Microsoft Office 365 (the productivity cloud suite that will soon add Dynamics CRM Online to its roster) to Microsoft Windows Azure.
To end out that Q&A, Park reiterated that Microsoft’s major market differentiation is in looking across the entire spectrum of the cloud, from applications to infrastructure to platform.