, a prominent figure in cloud computing, has finalized a deal to acquire Jigsaw, a wiki-style business contact database, for $142 million. This agreement also includes an incentive component, allowing for a 10% increase in the purchase price contingent upon meeting specific performance milestones.

Cloud computing stands out as the leading trend in the business software realm, attracting attention from established players such as Microsoft (MSFT), SAP (SAP), and Oracle (ORCL). By leveraging internet technologies, cloud computing enhances application usability while reducing costs associated with server and hardware investments.

With annual revenues surpassing $1 billion, (CRM) continues its remarkable growth trajectory. However, to further augment its capabilities and revenue streams, the company is likely to concentrate on strategic acquisitions like Jigsaw.

Originating in 2003, Jigsaw embarked on a journey common to high-tech startups, continually refining its business model and securing substantial venture capital funding. The company’s mission was ambitious: leveraging cloud computing and crowd-sourcing to develop a cutting-edge business database to rival established players like D&B (DNB). Overcoming challenges related to data accuracy, duplicate information, and user participation, Jigsaw devised innovative tools and incentive models, resulting in a thriving community of over 1.2 million members and a database comprising 21 million professionals from 4 million companies.

By integrating with, Jigsaw anticipates further enhancements to its database, given the latter’s access to extensive customer data. With approximately 800 existing customers, including notable names like New Horizons Computer Learning Centers, Hackett Group, and Sales Performance International, Jigsaw stands to benefit from’s expansive customer base and cross-selling opportunities.

While the transaction is expected to temporarily impact’s GAAP earnings by approximately 20 to 22 cents per share for fiscal year 2011, this is a common occurrence in rapidly growing markets. estimates the market opportunity to be $3 billion, signaling significant growth potential.

As’s stock price has doubled over the past year and the company has secured $575 million in debt financing, it is well-positioned for an assertive merger and acquisition strategy. The acquisition of Jigsaw likely marks the beginning of a series of strategic moves for in the near future.

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