Microsoft said to fancy $1bn social network

ENTERPRISE social network Yammer could be snapped up by tech giant Microsoft in a $1bn deal announced as soon as today, according to reports.

Set up by former PayPal chief operating officer David Sacks in 2008, Yammer is used for private communication within organisations, unlike public microblogging tool Twitter or friends-based social network Facebook.

Microsoft’s step into social networking would bring it into line with Salesforce.com, which bought Buddy Media for $745m earlier this month, and Oracle, which recently acquired social media data analysis firms Vitrue and Collective Intellect for $300m and an undisclosed amount respectively.

Yammer claims to be used by 200,000 companies worldwide, including 80 per cent of the Fortune 500. The network counts Deloitte, Ford, Nationwide and Telefonica O2 among its clients.

Microsoft and Yammer declined to comment.