Software giant Salesforce in advanced talks to buy Informatica

FILE PHOTO: Salesforce logo is seen near computer motherboard in this illustration taken January 8, 2024. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

NEW YORK: Customer relations software maker Salesforce is in advanced talks to acquire Informatica, a person familiar with the matter has told Reuters, in the latest sign of increased deal-making in the technology sector.

A deal could be announced soon, said the source, who requested anonymity as the discussions were confidential.

The price being discussed is below Informatica’s current share price of US$38.48, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The paper first reported the talks between Salesforce and Informatica.

Salesforce and Informatica did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Private equity firm Permira, which along with the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) holds a controlling stake of over 75% in Informatica, declined to comment. CPPIB could not be reached for comment.

Founded in 1993, Informatica offers subscription-based data management services over the cloud and also helps to automate tasks for more than 5,000 active customers.

Based in Redwood City, California, its customers include Unilever and Deloitte, according to its website.

Informatica’s shares have risen nearly 43% so far this year, valuing the company at about US$11.35bil.

The company was taken private in 2015 for about US$5.3bil by a consortium that included Permira and CPPIB.

Six years later, Permira and CPPIB took Informatica public again and its shares were listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

If the deal goes through, it would be the biggest for Salesforce since it acquired workplace messaging app Slack Technologies in 2020 for nearly US$28bil.

Salesforce’s dealmaking strategy came under scrutiny in early 2023, when activist investors, including ValueAct Capital and Elliott Management, questioned the company’s strategy and pushed the management for changes.

In response, Salesforce implemented cost-cutting and increased share buybacks. It also disbanded its mergers and acquisitions (M&A) board committee.

Salesforce has been a prolific acquirer. In 2019, it bought data analytics platform Tableau Software in an all-stock deal valued at US$15.7bil.

As part of the current enthusiasm for artificial intelligence sweeping through the technology sector, several large deals have been signed.

In January, design software company Synopsys agreed to buy smaller rival Ansys for about US$35bil.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise struck a deal in January to buy networking gear maker Juniper Networks for US$14bil.

Technology accounted for the largest share of M&A during the first quarter, jumping more than 42% year-on-year to about US$154bil, according to Dealogic. —Reuters

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