Salesforce has acquired Slack in a deal worth approximately $37.6 billion (US$ 27.7 billion).
The purchase confirms reports last week suggesting the deal was in its final stages.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff described the acquisition as “a match made in heaven” in a statement announcing the acquisition.
“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,” Benioff said.
“I’m thrilled to welcome Slack to the Salesforce Ohana [family] once the transaction closes.”
That closure isn’t expected to be completed until 2022 and will require Salesforce to take out a $13.6 billion bridge loan from three major US banks to help cover the costs.
Salesforce posted $7.3 billion revenue in the past three months – a 20 per cent boost from the previous year.
“We’re rapidly moving to an all-digital world, where work happens wherever people are,” Benioff said.
“Our results are being driven by the success of our customers and the relevance of our Customer 360 Platform in this new normal.”
Over the coming years, Salesforce will work to make Slack the new interface for Customer 360 with the tech giant saying its new purchase will be “deeply integrated” into Salesforce’s products.
Slack CEO and co-founder Stewart Butterfield was naturally very pleased with the deal.
“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,” he said in a statement.
“Personally, I believe this is the most strategic combination in the history of software, and I can’t wait to get going.”
Butterfield is set to pocket more than $1 billion in the takeover (before tax) and will also hold onto some three million shares in Salesforce.
The tech billionaire spent his early years living in a cabin without electricity or running water because his father had left the US to avoid being drafted into the Vietnam War.
Slack is Butterfield’s second major success after he sold photo-sharing platform Flickr to Yahoo for nearly $30 million in 2005.
The ubiquitous messaging software was almost an accidental product, born out of a game Butterfield was working on called Glitch.
When Glitch was shut down in 2012, Butterfield spun off a secondary company, based on the set of communication tools built during Glitch’s development: the Searchable Log of All Conversation and Knowledge, or Slack for short.