Activist investor Elliott Investment Management has taken a substantial stake in Salesforce, amid job cuts and a hefty fall in share price at the software company.
According to multiple reports, Elliott took a multi-billion dollar stake in Salesforce. The investor often pushes for strategic changes and seeks board representation. Elliott has previously targeted the likes of Twitter, where it demanded the ousting of then CEO Jack Dorsey, Pinterest, Citrix and AT&T.
San Francisco-based Salesforce had a market capitalization of $151 billion at close of trading on Friday, down from a peak of more than $300 billion in 2021. Shares jumped as much as 4.1% in pre-market trading on Monday.
“Salesforce is one of the preeminent software companies in the world, and having followed the company for nearly two decades, we have developed a deep respect for Marc Benioff and what he has built,” said Jesse Cohn, managing partner at Elliott in a statement. “We look forward to working constructively with Salesforce to realize the value befitting a company of its stature.”
Elliott becomes the second activist investor to take a slice of Salesforce in recent months. In October last year, Starboard Value took a stake in the software giant, and said the company had issues turning growth into profitability.
Salesforce, like a number of tech giants, has not had an easy time since lockdowns from the COVID-19 pandemic ended. Earlier this month the company said it would cut around 10% of its workforce and reduce real estate holdings. Salesforce said it had hired too many staff during the pandemic uptick, and said it was adjusting to more cautious spending habits of customers.
In the previous four years, the enterprise software firm had grown significantly as its workforce tripled in size, mostly through a host of acquisitions, including the purchase of workplace messaging company Slack for $27.7 billion. From January 2020 to October last year, the company’s headcount grew by more than 30,000.