Yesterday, 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.
Yesterday, 10:18 AM| Yesterday, 10:18 AM | 29 Comments
Yesterday, 9:06 AM
Tue, Sep. 6, 11:04 AM
- Last week, amid the latest Twitter (TWTR +0.9%) takeover speculation, Peck offered his position that he still doesn't see the company looking to sell itself at this time. While maintaining that view, today he assesses some potential acquirers on the minds of those observing, though notes he doesn't consider any one in particular a clear prospective buyer.
- Apple: "Pro: Diversify hardware model; social presence; some cost & rev synergies possible; data; large cash and FCF; Con: Less experience in ads and social; focus more on services and software after hardware; Potential – global leader with hardware integration; news/media ambitions; <5% of mkt cap."
- Alphabet: "Pro: Large net cash and FCF; real-time search is strategic fit; social; cost & rev synergies possible; data; content; Con: Already integrates with Twitter; anti-trust and FTC concerns; new financial discipline; dilutive Potential – strategic acquirer; bid once before (2010); not in a hurry given partnership; only <5% of market cap."
- Facebook: "Pro: Large net cash and FCF; strategic fit (FB unable to leverage real-time yet); cost & rev synergies possible; data; Con: Already has FB, IG, WhatsApp and Messenger all with >1B users globally; aggressively pursuing Live Potential – strategic acquirer but more likely to build on its own."
- Twitter's board is set for a scheduled meeting this Thursday.
Thu, Sep. 1, 12:16 PM
- With Twitter (TWTR +1.4%) takeover speculation reignited, Peck strikes down the rumors for the second time in a month.
- CNBC's David Faber earlier today discussed reaction to co-founder Evan Williams' comments and noted a board meeting he cites the company to be having next week on September 8. Peck, though, continues to indicate the board is supportive of CEO Jack Dorsey and doesn't feel an acquisition is imminent.
- Twitter is trading up nearly 7% since Tuesday's close.
Wed, Aug. 31, 1:45 PM
- Evan Williams, Twitter (TWTR +5.2%) co-founder and board member, issued the comment on a Bloomberg West segment (13:55 mark) yesterday evening.
- Takeover speculation has circulated in many forms over past months, with the latest rumors surfacing earlier in August.
- The company's shares have lost 30% in value over the last year, a primary factor contributing to the ever-revolving buzz.
Wed, Aug. 3, 2:29 PM
- CNBC reports rumor of a Twitter (TWTR +7.2%) takeover by two individual private investors.
- SunTrust Robinson Humphrey analyst Robert Peck, however, cast doubt on the activity noting the board is "100 percent behind CEO Jack Dorsey and his turnaround plans". He doesn't overlook the possibility of a buyout in the future but believes now is not the time.
- Traded volume is presently at 42.5M vs. an average of 23.6M.
- The increase in share price brings Twitter 3% below the level it was trading at prior to releasing last week's earnings. As of yesterday, the company was trading down 11% from that same point.
Wed, Jul. 27, 9:16 AM
- Oppenheimer keeps Perform rating on Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) following Q3 revenue guidance miss (12% below Street) on weaker new advertisers and continued pricing declines.
- Notes that Twitter also "llacks certain measurement and performance capabilities of other social media platforms."
- Says that live video "is unlikely to provide material revenue given the limited amount of ads they sell, but management is betting on improvements in engagement vs. bear case that most hard-core sports fans are already on TWTR.
- "If live video does drive engagement, we could see TWTR bought for 10-13x by a large media company vs. its 12.6x after-hours." That's not a lot of upside.
- Analyst Jason Helfstein is ranked #314 out of 4,083 analysts by TipRanks.
Tue, Jun. 21, 7:51 AM
Mon, Jun. 20, 12:21 PM
- "Machine learning is increasingly at the core of everything we build at Twitter (TWTR +3%)," says CEO Jack Dorsey, announcing the purchase of U.K.-based Magic Pony Technology for a reported $150M.
- In the machine-learning space, Twitter has previously purchased Madbits in 2014 and Whetlab last year.
- Magic Pony has developed techniques of using neural networks and machine learnings to provide expanded data for images, says Techcrunch.
- “Twitter has gone after video in a big way and buying Magic Pony demonstrates how important video is for them," says Suranga Chandratillake, a partner at Balderton.
Mon, Jun. 13, 8:53 AM
- Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) will fund the deal mostly by issuing debt, with LinkedIn's (NYSE:LNKD) results to be reported as part of MSFT's Productivity and Business Processes segment. EPS is expected to take a minimal hit in fiscals 2017 and 2018, but the deal should become accretive beginning in fiscal 2019.
- The purchase is expected to close this year.
- Microsoft still intends to complete its current $40B buyback plan by year-end.
- Jeff Weiner will remain CEO of LinkedIn, reporting to Microsoft chief Satya Nadella.
- Nadella: "Together we can accelerate the growth of LinkedIn, as well as Microsoft Office 365 and Dynamics as we seek to empower every person and organization on the planet.”
- A conference call is scheduled for 11:45 ET.
- LNKD remains higher by 48.4% to $194.49. Reopened for trade, MSFT is lower by 3.6%.
- Previously: Microsoft buys LinkedIn for $26.2B (June 13)
- Twitter next? TWTR is higher by 4% premarket.
Thu, Jun. 2, 10:17 PM
- Adding to the more colorful side of the stories about potential Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) bidders: Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) met with a management team led by Yahoo chief Marissa Mayer weeks ago to discuss a possible merger, the New York Post reports tonight.
- But though the teams talked for several hours, it looks to have been just an informational tire-kicking, as Twitter reportedly got out of the bidding process afterward.
- Indeed, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey didn't show up for the confab, and that company has enough on its plate, a source said: “They’re very scared their shareholders would be outraged ... which is not, quite frankly, an unfounded fear.”
- Bids are coming in for the second round in Yahoo's auction of core assets, with Verizon (NYSE:VZ) still widely believed to be a front-runner.
- Previously: SunTrust's Peck: Three pricing scenarios for Yahoo bids (Jun. 01 2016)
Tue, Jan. 26, 11:42 AM
- With Twitter's (TWTR -0.1%) market cap now near $11B and the company's major executive shakeup raising questions about its turnaround, Cantor's Youssef Squali thinks potential acquirers could start lining up.
- Squali: "With over 300M MAUs and a unique global offering of one-to-all broadcasting platform, we see a lot of value in TWTR for both technology and media companies alike ... There is no concentration of share ownership and no super-voting structure, with the top 3 shareholders owning 6.4%, 5.1%, and 5.0%, respectively." He sees Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Fox, Disney, Comcast, and Time Warner as potential bidders.
- Separately, GoPro (GPRO -1.9%) has announced its cameras will be able to stream footage in real-time via Twitter's Periscope livestreaming platform. The feature, which could be popular for sports broadcasting, is currently supported by Hero4 Black and Silver cameras (they feature built-in Wi-Fi/Bluetooth) connected to iPhones. It arrives shortly after Twitter began embedding Periscope broadcasts within its user Timelines.
- Yesterday: Twitter closes near $17 following departures
Jul. 14, 2015, 12:03 PM
- Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) momentarily jumped on a hoax article (made to look like a Bloomberg report) stating the company is working with bankers after receiving a buyout offer. Bloomberg has confirmed the story is fake.
- Shares nonetheless remain sharply higher on the day, and are up 6.3% over the last two days. Twitter, of course, is no stranger to jumping on M&A rumors.
- Q2 results arrive on July 28.
Jun. 17, 2015, 4:04 PM
- Whetlab was developing technologies meant to help companies adopt machine learning, an artificial intelligence field in which algorithms are used to detect patterns and make predictions. Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) plans to use Whetlab to further its own machine learning efforts.
- Facebook and Google have been making huge machine learning investments in recent years. Areas of interest have included analyzing photos to automatically organize and tag them based on their content (e.g. Google Photos), and analyzing articles and news feed content to surface related material.
- Twitter could conceivably leverage machine learning to both organize/tag content (whether tweets or media content), and to sift through its data firehose to pull up interesting/noteworthy tweets for a user (that might make Chris Sacca happy).
- Recent Twitter acquisitions: Periscope, TellApart
May 27, 2015, 2:47 AM
- Several other Internet giants reached out and held early discussions about buying Flipboard in recent weeks, including Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) and Google (GOOG, GOOGL), although those talks involved ideas around how products would be integrated rather than centering around price, sources told WSJ.
- Talks with Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) went further, discussing a $1B+ all-stock deal, but those negotiations have largely stalled since April.
- Previously: Report: Twitter held talks to buy Flipboard for over $1B (May. 25 2015)