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Salesforce.com Seeks IPO

Salesforce.com is looking for a fat $115 million in a proposed initial public offering. The company Thursday registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The announcement named Morgan Stanley as sole book runner, with Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., UBS Securities, Wachovia Capital Markets and William Blair & Company pitching in. The company gave no date for the IPO, and a company spokesperson pled "quiet period."

Just four years ago, San Francisco-based Salesforce.com was a little no-name with one odd idea: offering cheap and basic sales force automation over the Web. Partnerships with other emerging players and a few majors, along with customer disenchantment with huge, complicated enterprise customer relationship management projects, have made it a strong contender in the customer relationship management (CRM) market.

"Part of their success is listening to the customer," said Tom Taulli, author of "Investing in IPOs" and a professor of corporate finance at University of Southern California. He said that a big reason companies aren't buying technology is that new projects are too expensive and too time-consuming. "Putting in a Siebel installation could take a couple years out of your life."

Salesforce.com's most recent partnership, announced this fall, was with