Google buying social-media startup Wildfire

Google buying startup that helps businesses manage social-media campaigns

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Google is buying a company that specializes in social media marketing as it intensifies competition with Facebook for ad dollars and attention.

The company, Redwood City, Calif.-based Wildfire, helps businesses such as Cirque du Soleil and Spotify manage social media efforts across the Internet.

It's an important area for Google as people spend more time on social networks such as Facebook and as advertisers follow them. Google's social network, Google Plus, hasn't had the traction that Facebook Inc. enjoys. Wildfire will let Google play a role whether the ad campaign is on Google Plus, Facebook, Twitter or elsewhere.

Wildfire's co-founders and other staff will join Google Inc. The deal's financial details were not disclosed.

In recent months, Oracle Corp. and Salesforce.com Inc. also have reached deals to buy similar startups.

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