Oracle, based in Redwood City, California, purchased RightNow Technologies Inc. for $1.5 billion in October 2011 to gain customer-service expertise. Armonk, New York-based IBM bought DemandTec Inc. in December 2011 to add Internet-based tools to help businesses adjust promotions based on buying patterns.
SAP AG spent $4.3 billion last October buying Ariba Inc., which allows companies to trade products online via the so-called cloud. The Walldorf, Germany-based company purchased cloud-software provider SuccessFactors Inc. a year ago.
“If you look at the companies that LivePerson competes with, there are only two public companies left. The other ones have been bought,” Jon Hickman, an analyst at Ladenburg Thalmann & Co. in New York, who has a buy rating on the shares, said by phone yesterday. “LivePerson might have the same fate, and get taken out by a big software company.”