SAN FRANCISCO – Customer-relationship-management software-as-a-service (SaaS) large Salesforce reportedly is in talks to accumulate Slack Technologies Inc., a cloud-based chat platform for workspaces. The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the story, stated a deal may very well be introduced as quickly as subsequent week.

Publicly traded Slack’s shares rose 34 % because the rumor made the rounds, whereas Salesforce shares slid about 5 %. Overall, Salesforce inventory skilled a 60-percent rise this yr, for a present market valuation of $227 billion.

WSJ analysts stated any deal seemingly would worth Slack above its pre-rumor market cap of $17 billion, making it Salesforce’s largest acquisition to this point. In 2019, Salesforce acquired data-visualization firm Tableau Software Inc. in an all-stock transaction valued at $15 billion. A yr earlier, Salesforce acquired integration software program developer MuleSoft for $6.5 billion in money and inventory.

The Slack acquisition, if it happens, would rank fourth among the many largest transactions ever in the software program sector, behind IBM‘s 2019 buy of Red Hat for $34 billion, Microsoft‘s $27 billion acquisition of LinkedIn in 2016, and Facebook‘s $19 billion WhatsApp purchase in 2014.

Salesforce is just not Slack’s first suitor. Microsoft tried to purchase the corporate for $eight billion in 2016, however the two by no means sealed a deal. Microsoft subsequently developed Teams, which competes with Slack head-to-head. Microsoft’s shares additionally dipped barely on information of the potential Salesforce-Slack union.

In October 2019, Slack reported an lively buyer base of 12 million day by day customers. By finish of buying and selling November 25, the corporate’s market cap had ballooned to $22 billion.

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