SuccessFactors Buys Enterprise Learning Management Software Plateau For $290M

April 26, 2011 from Venture Loop
On the heels of buying enterprise learning startup Jambok,the company has acquired another learning management software developer-Plateau Systems. SuccessFactors will pay $145 million in cash plus $145 million in stock for Plateau, for a total of $290 million.
Plateau Systems’ Learning Management Systems is generally usually used by Human Resources departments for the management and delivery of learning and training across organizations. Plateau Systems’s Talent Management Suite includes applications for learning management, performance management, career and succession planning and compensation management.
Plateau currently brings more than 350 customers to SuccessFactors, including General Electric, the U.S. Air Force and Capital One. Based on initial estimates, the combined companies will have more than 15 million users. After the deal closes, Plateau’s SaaS based LMS will be integrated directly into SuccessFactors’ BizX suite.
The acquisition price is fairly high for SuccessFactors, whose largest acquisition to date has been social enterprise software company CubeTree for $50 million. But clearly, SuccessFactors sees tremendous potential in aligning its business with human capital management.
Plateau Systems is a provider of Talent Management Systems that provides SaaS solutions that allow organizations to develop, analyze and manage organizational talent, one of the key factors that affect workforce productivity and operating performance. Plateau is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia with offices across the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific.
Plateau Systems was founded in 1996 by Paul Sparta, Chairman and CEO, and Brad Cooper, Senior Vice President, Product Strategy – both of whom still serve as Plateau executives. Plateau Systems developed one of the industry’s first Learning Management Systems (LMS), systems usually used by Human Resources departments for the management and delivery of learning and training across organizations. Plateau’s customers include major global organizations and government agencies. In early 2000, Plateau Systems delivered an integrated J2EE-based talent management platform, which allowed organizations to link learning and training with employee performance to measure whether employee goals were aligned with corporate objectives. In 2007, Plateau acquired Nuvosoft, a provider of Web-based compensation management software and integrated Nuvosoft’s functionality into its talent management platform.

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