Wed, Sep. 28, 6:28 PM
- Now officially linked in to wide-ranging speculation about who might buy Twitter (TWTR -3.2%): AT&T (T -1.5%).
- A purchase by AT&T could make sense, Mizuho's Neil Doshi writes, but he thinks Twitter's valuation is such that an acquisition doesn't really add up for anybody. He's downgraded TWTR to Underperform, with a price target of $15 (Twitter shares closed today at $22.96).
- If not great fits, the best fits for a Twitter purchase are Salesforce (NYSE:CRM), Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) and AT&T, "but that is about it" and "only Alphabet makes sense from a strategic perspective."
- Fundamentals at Twitter have "deteriorated significantly" over the past year, Doshi says. Verizon's paying about six times EV/EBITDA for the core of Yahoo (growing almost as fast as Twitter in many respects), while Twitter trades near a multiple of 16. Microsoft is buying LinkedIn for 20 times, though LinkedIn is growing much faster than Twitter.
- Meanwhile, Nomura reiterated a Neutral rating on Twitter and price target of $13, while Loop Capital downgraded to Sell from Hold, with a price target of $18.
Mon, Sep. 26, 3:32 PM
- With Salesforce (reportedly working with Bank of America) (CRM -0.2%), Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) and The Walt Disney Co. (DIS -1.3%) rumored to be in the mix, Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) is said to be gearing up to present itself to potential acquirers.
- While a bid by Salesforce is seen as unlikely and unfavorable by some (Citi, Morgan Stanley), last Friday it appeared firmly in the mx. Alphabet, meanwhile, is considered a favorite by others, with the available cash, advertising expertise and social network tie-in possibilities to make Twitter work under a new parent organization. Now that Disney is the latest to reportedly join the group, sports, distribution and video prospects are being weighed.
- Trading up more mildly than Friday's run on this development, it appears analysts, investors and Twitter itself are unsure of what direction the company will take next. The negative reaction of Salesforce shares on Friday and Disney shares today, though, may signal difficulty in attaining favorable terms for all parties involved in a deal should one come closer to materialization.
- Update (3:41 PM ET): CNBC's David Faber adds Microsoft (MSFT -0.8%) in as a potential bidder.
Mon, Sep. 26, 1:11 PM
- Citi's Walter Pritchard expressed like sentiment regarding a hypothetical Salesforce buyout of Twitter last Friday.
- Morgan Stanley's Keith Weiss today cites "an inability to see revenue synergies from the combination."
- Further: "Frankly, we struggle to see any near-term revenue opportunities from the combination of Salesforce.com and Twitter that aren’t available today via the current partnership – i.e . social listening/social media management. Vala’s list, while interesting potential opportunities for Twitter, seem to have limited adjacency to the current Salesforce.com solutions portfolio or core customer base. Even the longer-term value add of some insights yielded from Twitter data via Salesforce.com’s developing AI capabilities is difficult for us to see. Predictive marketing capabilities in the Marketing Cloud? Insight into how to better sell to Twitter users?"
- Weiss assumes a $14B-$17B theoretical acquisition range should Salesforce (CRM -0.7%) pursue Twitter (TWTR -3.1%) (based on 5x-7x average forward EV/sales of similar Salesforce transactions).
- Retains Salesforce at Overweight with a $107 price target (current price $69.94).
Fri, Sep. 23, 1:03 PM
- With Twitter (TWTR +18.2%) and Salesforce (CRM -5.3%) trading in opposite directions on today's buzz, Citi's Walter Pritchard states his position that the likelihood of a deal between the two is low and doesn't like the opportunity for Salesforce should one materialize.
- Pritchard: "While Twitter is involved in the customer service process, we don’t believe it is necessary for salesforce to own Twitter to be able to use it as a medium for customer service. Also, we don’t believe that if someone else bought Twitter, salesforce would be prevented from using Twitter as they do today. Our response, if CRM were to buy TWTR, would be negative. Twitter is profitable and while back of the envelope the deal might not be dilutive, we believe it would fuel concerns that CRM is de-focusing on for “customer” area in a quest to stretch for growth."
- Maintains a Buy rating on Salesforce amid the speculation.
Fri, Sep. 23, 10:18 AM| Fri, Sep. 23, 10:18 AM | 29 Comments
Fri, Sep. 23, 9:06 AM| Fri, Sep. 23, 9:06 AM | 100 Comments
Tue, Sep. 13, 5:19 PM
- In a Bloomberg interview, Marc Benioff comments that Oracle's (NASDAQ:ORCL) NetSuite (NYSE:N) acquisition marks a "desperation move" and doesn't feel Oracle will become a stronger CRM competitor because of it. He goes on to cite Larry Ellison's largest NetSuite shareholder status and claims the company was something he simply wanted to have.
- The $9.3B, $109 per share deal was announced in July, though some recent pushback by shareholder T. Rowe Price to the terms have complicated its closing.
- Oracle reports Q1 2017 results on Thursday with its share price moderately lower (2.45%) since the NetSuite deal was disclosed. Salesforce (NYSE:CRM), meanwhile, has also realized issues of late, trading down 8% since releasing its Q2 report on the last day of August.
Mon, Aug. 1, 6:13 PM
- Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) shares are relatively unchanged in extended trading after the deal was disclosed in an 8-K filing today.
- The transaction figure in the document is $582M of stock, though TechCrunch is reporting the total value of the arrangement to be worth $750M.
- Quip offers a cloud word-processing and document-editing service.
- This deal follows Salesforce's recent unsuccessful effort to acquire LinkedIn.
- Quip press release
Sun, Jul. 24, 8:23 AM
- Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) CEO Marc Benioff, who recently lost a bidding war for LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) to Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), would have made a stronger bid for the social network had it continued talks with him after its call for final offers.
- Persistent bidding by Salesforce - during the two months before LinkedIn's agreement to negotiate exclusively with Microsoft - ultimately raised the price of the deal by 22%, or $5B.
Thu, Jul. 14, 12:06 PM
- Brent Thill of UBS reiterates a Buy rating on Salesforce.com (CRM +0.3%) with a price target of $100 (current price $81.59).
- Citing the company's recently completed and largest yet acquisition - enterprise cloud solutions provider Demandware - Thill feels a significant gap has been filled in the company's product portfolio. The note expresses this deal was the best of all available options requiring a commitment of less than 5% of revenue even though the uniqueness of Demandware's assets are believed to have led to a higher multiple in securing the company.
Sun, Jul. 3, 9:20 AM
- A bidding war with Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) forced Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) to pay nearly $6B extra last month to seal its planned takeover of LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD).
- Details of the frenzied bidding were revealed in a filing with the SEC ahead of a shareholder vote to approve the transaction.
- A month-long back-and-forth between the two rivals pushed the value of the all-cash deal to $26.2B, making it the third-largest acquisition in the tech industry.
- Previously: Bloomberg: Salesforce bid for LinkedIn prior to the Microsoft deal (Jun. 16 2016)
Thu, Jun. 16, 6:03 PM
- Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) was bidding for LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD) before the professional social network agreed to a $26.2B deal with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), sources tell Bloomberg.
- There was already speculation Salesforce (currently has a $55.3B market cap) or another third party was vying to acquire LinkedIn, given Microsoft is paying a near-50% premium to where LinkedIn traded before the deal was announced. LinkedIn's recruiting/jobs products would've complemented Salesforce's cloud CRM apps, and its user data could've been integrated with the apps. LinkedIn's Sales Navigator social selling tool already syncs with Salesforce's apps.
- Last year, Salesforce was reported to have held buyout talks with Microsoft that fell apart due to disagreements over price.
Wed, Jun. 1, 7:45 AM
- Demandware (NYSE:DWRE) +55.9% premarket after Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) agrees to acquire the provider of software to design e-commerce websites, in a deal worth ~$2.8B; CRM -2% premarket.
- CRM's cash offer of $75/share represents a 56.3% premium to DWRE's closing price yesterday.
- CRM expects the deal to raise its FY 2017 revenue by $100M-$120M while reducing adjusted EPS by $0.07; CRM also expects FQ2 adjusted EPS of $0.21-$0.22 and revenue of $2.01B-$2.03B.
- DWRE's clients include Lands' End, L'Oreal and Marks and Spencer Group.
Dec. 23, 2015, 5:34 PM
- A week after The Information reported Salesforce (NYSE:CRM) is in talks to buy SteelBrick for ~$600M, the company has announced it's buying the cloud configure-price-quote (CPQ) software firm for $360M ($300M net of cash on hand) in stock after accounting for Salesforce's existing stake in the company. (8-K filing)
- The deal is expected to close during Salesforce's April quarter. The company states "a portion of the aggregate consideration will be subject to a retention holdback and a portion will be held in escrow to secure the indemnification obligations of the SteelBrick stockholders."
- Last week: The Information's report and details about SteelBrick's products
- Update: SteelBrick CEO Godard Abel in a blog post about the deal: "Over the past six years, we’ve been on a mission to make selling simple by developing next generation Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) and Subscription Billing apps, optimized for small- and mid-sized companies, on the Salesforce cloud platform with speed and ease ... Being a part of Salesforce will give us an amazing opportunity to accelerate our delivery of fully integrated Quote-to-Cash applications right within Salesforce, helping thousands more customers grow revenue faster than ever before."
Dec. 17, 2015, 11:19 AM
- The Information reports Salesforce (CRM -0.4%) is in talks to buy SteelBrick, a provider of cloud-based configure-price-quote (CPQ) software for sales pros, for as much as $600M, mostly in stock.
- SteelBrick's CPQ, billing, and analytics software help salespeople come up with proposals/prices, manage invoices and collections, and forecast the impact of price quotes on revenue. They complement Salesforce's core Sales Cloud salesforce automation software, and are built on top of Salesforce's cloud app platform.
- Salesforce invested in SteelBrick earlier this year. Oracle bought SteelBrick rival BigMachines in 2013 for a reported 9-figure sum; SteelBrick employs a number of BigMachines vets.
Aug. 6, 2015, 2:15 PM
- P-E firms Permira has closed its $5.3B ($48.75/share) acquisition of Informatica (INFA +0.4%), a deal first announced on April 7. Sohaib Abbasi will step down as Informatica's CEO, but remain chairman.
- Along with the deal's closing, Informatica has announced Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Salesforce.com (NYSE:CRM) have become "strategic investors," taking stakes of undisclosed sizes in the data warehousing software vendor.