Microsoft has confirmed that it is finally killing off Yammer, the enterprise social network it bought over a decade ago for $1.2 billion.
Yammer was originally created in San Francisco in 2008, with co-founder David Sacks officially launching the startup at a TechCrunch startup event. The company then raised more than $140 million in funding before Microsoft stepped in with its billion-dollar bid four years after launch.
In many ways, it’s surprising that the Yammer brand has lasted this long. Despite Microsoft’s best efforts to bring Yammer to the masses by integrating it into its core suite of Office products, Microsoft has moved on to developing tangential communication tools such as Microsoft Teams, which the company integrated with Yammer in 2019. And then two years ago, Microsoft launched Viva, billed as an “employee experience platform” that looked like the corporate intranet of old. In the months that followed, Microsoft ramped up Viva and last year launched Viva Engage, which it said was at the time an “evolution of the Yammer Communities app.”
It was becoming increasingly clear that there was little place or need for Yammer in Microsoft’s product line, and having two similar brands doing much the same thing was confusing. And so, it now completely removes the branding and launches on Viva Engage instead.
“Over the past few months, we’ve heard your feedback that having two apps with similar experiences and the same services and content has introduced confusion and made adoption and clarity difficult for end users,” noted the senior vice president of Viva and Yammer. Murali Sitaram in a blog post.
Long story short, Yammer will be fully swallowed by Viva Engage, with the brand gradually changing across products throughout 2023. This will include changing existing Yammer mobile apps to Viva Engage starting in March, which will be followed by a transition for the Yammer web app starting this summer.
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