Stevens Alum to Sell Company to Oracle for $1.43 Billion
Class of 1983 Founder Gianforte Built Leading Customer Service Cloud Firm
RightNow Technologies, a cloud based customer-service company started by Stevens Alum, Greg Gianforte, will soon be owned by Oracle. Oracle executives announced plans to purchase the company for 1.43 billion dollars.
RightNow, founded by Gianforte in 1997, is the leading customer service and support solutions company. It has enjoyed continuous growth since inception, with nearly 2,000 consumer-focused companies around the world using its products.
"RightNow's products add leading customer experience capabilities that help empower companies to interact with and provide a consistent experience to customers across channels," said Gianforte. "We look forward to combining our complementary capabilities along with maintaining and expanding our presence in Bozeman, Montana in order to better service our customers."
Gianforte is founder, chairman and CEO of the company. He earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Stevens in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering and graduated in 1983.
He serves on the board of directors of several privately held companies. He was inducted into the CRM Hall of Fame in 2007, holds an Honorary Doctorate of Computer Science from MSU, 2007, and was awarded Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Pacific Northwest software category, 2003.
Oracle says it plans to add RightNow's software to its own portfolio of online offerings, which include programs for managing sales and marketing and human resources. It offered $43 a share for RightNow, valuing it at about $1.43 billion. The buyer said the deal, expected to close by early next year, is worth about $1.5 billion net of RightNow's cash and debt.
RightNow shares jumped 19% to $42.83 in morning trading. Oracle shares gained 26 cents to $32.38.