SAP says it has agreed to pay $8 billion cash for survey-software provider Qualtrics International Inc., which was preparing for an initial sale of stock to the public.
SAP said Sunday that the deal was approved by boards of both companies and Qualtrics shareholders. The sale is expected to close in the first half of next year.
Prove, Utah-based Qualtrics filed last week for an IPO. Its products help companies get feedback from employees and customers. Qualtrics said in a regulatory filing that it has more than 9,000 customers including more than 75 percent of Fortune 100 companies.
For Germany’s SAP, the deal is one of its biggest. In 2014, it paid about $8.3 billion for Concur, which makes software to manage employee travel and expenses.
“We continually seek out transformational opportunities – today’s announcement is exactly that. Together, SAP and Qualtrics represent a new paradigm, similar to market-making shifts in personal operating systems, smart devices and social networks,” said SAP CEO Bill McDermott. “SAP already touches 77 percent of the world’s transactions. When you combine our operational data with Qualtrics’ experience data, we will accelerate the XM category with an end-to-end solution with immediate global scale. For Qualtrics, this introduces a dynamic new partner with the belief, passion and scale to bring experience management to millions of customers around the world.”
Ryan Smith, CEO of Qualtrics, will remain head of that group.
“Our mission is to help organizations deliver the experiences that turn their customers into fanatics, employees into ambassadors, products into obsessions and brands into religions,” Smith said. “Supported by a global team of over 95,000, SAP will help us scale faster and achieve our mission on a broader stage. This will put the XM Platform everywhere overnight. We could not be more excited to join forces with Bill and the SAP team in this once-in-a-generation opportunity to power the experience economy.”