After days of rumours, customer relationship management software vendor Salesforce has confirmed it has struck a deal to acquire enterprise communication platform provider Slack in a mega deal worth US$27.7 billion.
According to Salesforce, the combination of Slack’s offering with Salesforce Customer 360 will create the “operating system for the new way to work, uniquely enabling companies to grow and succeed in the all-digital world”.
Following the acquisition, Slack will be deeply integrated into every Salesforce Cloud, the companies said.
It is hoped that Slack, as the new interface for Salesforce Customer 360, will transform how people communicate, collaborate and take action on customer information across Salesforce as well as information from all of their other business apps and systems.
For Salesforce chair and CEO Marc Benioff, the agreement represents a “match made in heaven”.
“Stewart [Butterfield, Slack CEO and co-founder] and his team have built one of the most beloved platforms in enterprise software history, with an incredible ecosystem around it,” Benioff said. “This is a match made in heaven.
“Together, Salesforce and Slack will shape the future of enterprise software and transform the way everyone works in the all-digital, work-from-anywhere world. I’m thrilled to welcome Slack to the Salesforce Ohana once the transaction closes,” he added.
Butterfield, matching Benioff’s appetite for hyperbole, suggested the deal was nothing less than historic in its importance.
“Salesforce started the cloud revolution, and two decades later, we are still tapping into all the possibilities it offers to transform the way we work. The opportunity we see together is massive,” Butterfield said.
“As software plays a more and more critical role in the performance of every organisation, we share a vision of reduced complexity, increased power and flexibility, and ultimately a greater degree of alignment and organisational agility.
“Personally, I believe this is the most strategic combination in the history of software, and I can’t wait to get going,” he said.
Upon completion of the transaction, Slack will become an operating unit of Salesforce and will continue to be led by Butterfield.
Under the terms of the agreement, Slack shareholders will receive US$26.79 in cash and 0.0776 shares of Salesforce common stock for each Slack share, representing an enterprise value of approximately US$27.7 billion based on the closing price of Salesforce’s common stock on November 30, 2020.
The board of directors of each of Salesforce and Slack have approved the transaction and the Slack board recommends that Slack stockholders approve the transaction and adopt the merger agreement.
The transaction is anticipated to close in the second quarter of Salesforce’s fiscal year 2022, subject to approval by the Slack stockholders, the receipt of required regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.