Groupon becomes must have SaaS reference customer for NetSuite, Salesforce.com

Given Groupon's youth and heady growth it is the perfect greenfield for enterprise cloud deployments. NetSuite and Salesforce.com are key infrastructure providers to Groupon.

Groupon is becoming a regular among software as a service CEOs talking up their respective businesses. Groupon has plans to deploy NetSuite's OneWorld ERP around the world and Salesforce.com is in on the act too.

The local deals company, which will be a highly anticipated initial public offering given LinkedIn's debut, is a must-have reference company. Groupon also is being built on cloud software.

Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff named Groupon along with other big reference customers like GE on the company's earnings conference call Thursday. Benioff called Groupon a "marquee transaction" in the first quarter and added:

Groupon is the world's fastest growing company, offering daily deals on events and food and services in 44 countries. And while they initially talked to us about the Sales Cloud which has been the heart of their growth, of their sales and marketing efforts, we showed them how the platform Force.com and a full range of services could supercharge their businesses and deliver the quality and scale they need to maintain their phenomenal g

rowth rate. And now the Force.com platform will touch nearly every aspect of Groupon's business whether it is their management of merchants, the core of their business, their city planning and merchandising efforts, their customer service and consumer support, whether it's the development of their coupons, Force.com will help them to re-architect their company for the future.

Netsuite days ago noted that Groupon rolled out its ERP in five countries in six weeks. Twenty-six Groupon countries will come in the next three months. Groupon's previous financial systems revolved around spreadsheets. NetSuite CEO Zach Nelson referred to Groupon multiple times in his talk with analysts recently.

Add it up and Groupon is using NetSuite for its financial system of record with Salesforce.com bolted on for sales items.

Other details about Groupon's infrastructure are forthcoming. But one thing is clear: Given Groupon's youth and heady growth it is the perfect greenfield for enterprise cloud deployments. Groupon's challenge will be to take these moving SaaS parts and integrate them into a coherent system. Groupon's future upgrades and implementations will be worth watching from an IT management perspective.

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