ExactTarget parent cutting 200 jobs worldwide due to merger

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Salesforce.com, the new parent of Indianapolis-based ExactTarget Inc., plans to lay off 200 employees worldwide in connection with its recent $2.5 billion buyout of the local digital marketing powerhouse, a spokesman confirmed Thursday.

ExactTarget spokesman Mitch Frazier said in an email to IBJ that the impact on Indianapolis would be “minimal.” But he did not provide specifics on how many local jobs would be affected or the types of positions.

About 1,000 of ExactTarget's 1,800 workers are in Indianapolis.

In a prepared statement on the cuts, Salesforce.com said, “Combining ExactTarget with our existing Marketing Cloud provides synergy, and we will be reducing our total headcount by approximately 200 people globally to reflect this opportunity.”

“We care deeply about our employees and we’re providing resources to position them for success in the next step of their careers—whether that’s a new position within salesforce.com or a new opportunity elsewhere," the release said.

Salesforce.com closed on its buyout of ExactTarget in July. The acquisition, Salesforce’s largest, is an effort by the San Francisco-based cloud computing giant to build its presence in the digital marketing arena.

Analysts previously told IBJ that Salesforce likely would want to keep ExactTarget’s technology- and marketing-oriented employees in place for their expertise. The most likely Indianapolis job cuts would be back-office positions.

The day after the buyout announcement in June, ExactTarget's CEO sent a memo to employees saying Salesforce would likely invest in Indianapolis, protecting local jobs.

Frazier noted in his email Thursday that the digital marketer has more than 100 job openings posted on its website.

Salesforce will report quarterly earnings after markets close Thursday. It will be the first time the company does so since the ExactTarget merger.


  • Little impact to ET
    There were less than 20 ET jobs cut, all in G&A. This happens in just about every acquisition. There are still a ton of job openings to be filled in the Indy offices.
  • Incentives are spread out
    EDGE incentives are spread out long-term for this specific reason. They're often paid out over 10 years for hires made within four years. If the number of employees decrease, then the incentives decrease or go away.
  • These appear to be Salesforce jobs, not Exact Target
    Doug, it appears that the majority of the job cuts will be in the Salesforce employee base. The article notes that there might be some 'back office' cuts with Exact Target, but they are still actively hiring in other areas of the company: "Frazier noted in his email Thursday that the digital marketer has more than 100 job openings posted on its website." /Jim
  • State Incentives
    I'd love to hear a response to Doug's comment. I'm curious as to how that works. Will that money be recouped and allocated to the next wave of "ExactTarget's" to continue to grow the Indianapolis tech community?
  • State Incentives
    Curious, weren't there some incentives and tax credits provided ExactTarget for making the additional hirings? Is the state going to recoup that investment since it won't be available in payroll taxes anymore?

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