Salesforce.com inc. (NYSE:CRM) shares surged in a good market on Wednesday as rumors that Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) was set to make a deal to buy the firm cropped up once more. Microsoft could not agree on a price to buy the firm earlier this year, but a deal may still be in the works if chatter around the market is believed.
At time of writing shares in salesforce.com inc. were up by close to 2% as a result of the rumors. Today’s rumors said that Microsoft would put in a $90 per share bid for the firm. Shares in the software concern opened at $73.50 this morning. That makes the supposed offer 22% over today’s open.
Microsoft-salesforce rumors spread
Back in April a Bloomberg report declared that salesforce.com had hired bankers “to help it field takeover offers after being approached by a potential acquirer.” That process resulted in nothing but rumors of talks between the firm and Microsoft.
Today’s rumor is even less well-backed. In mid-may it emerged from unnamed sources that the sticking point in the salesforce-Microsoft deal had been the price for the firm. Microsoft was willing to shell out $55bn in order to get its hands on salesforce, but CEO Marc Benioff turned that down. He was, said a CNBC report on the talks, looking for $70bn for the firm.
Since rumors of the sale of the firm began, shares have spiked based on hopes that a buyout may be on the cards. Today’s action may be a result of simple optimism, or just the market’s penchant for spreading gossip around.
The salesforce.com story is just one of many merger deals that have been rumored since the start of the years.
Microsoft is busy right now
If a deal is in the works at Microsoft, it seems that the firm is too bust to release details about it today. Tuesday saw the firm show off its big new features for the Xbox One home console, while Wednesday brought a big shake up at the top of the firm.
Sataya Nadella got rid of two members of his executive team on Wednesday morning. Steven Elop, former CEO at Nokia who joined Microsoft after the buyout of the Finnish firm’s hardware division, stepped down as head of the Lumia devices segment. Mark Penn, the firm’s Chief Strategy Officer will also leave the firm.
Mr. Nadella said “We are aligning our engineering efforts and capabilities to deliver on our strategy and, in particular, our three core ambitions.” He added that the change “will enable us to deliver better products and services that our customers love at a more rapid pace.”
It seems unlikely that Mr. Nadella would be able to pull off a major shake-up of his management team while at the same time chairing talks to make one of the biggest mergers of all time happen at his firm. It’s more likely that today’s rumors are just that.
A salesforce.com deal might not be possible today, and at $90 per share those with cash behind Microsoft might be very unhappy. That would value the firm at close to $60bn, more half of the total Microsoft $95 bn cash pile.