Analysis: What's Next For Twitter After Salesforce Backed Out As Buyer?
It's back to the drawing board for Twitter after its biggest potential buyer Salesforce lost interest in acquiring the microblogging site.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey can now refocus his attention on other strategies for expansion or partnership. So what's next for Twitter?
The failure of the sale process to push through is "a blessing in disguise" for Dorsey, according to an anonymous source familiar with the matter, as quoted by the Financial Times. "This has been a distraction for him and the company."
'Twitter Wasn't The Right Fit'
Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, believes Twitter "wasn't the right fit" for his company. This notion may have come about after he reportedly faced pressure from Salesforce investors who expressed concern over whether Twitter could be an asset to a company that offers sales software to other enterprises.
The wealth of social media consumer data at Twitter's disposal might still make the microblogging site a viable option for companies that want to mine it for business intelligence and their own client services. But in a shareholder meeting last week, Benioff told investors that access to Twitter data was not the primary consideration for a takeover.
On the surface, the pullout of Salesforce as a bidder may seem like bad news for Twitter as it has struggled to find a serious buyer over the past month. Google, Apple and Disney have all refused to put in a bid.
A Merger Of Twitter And Square
As business intelligence, mined from consumer data, becomes the premium selling point of a company like Twitter, Dorsey might do well to look into his own arsenal first.
Some analysts are suggesting that Twitter could instead explore a merger with another group helmed by Dorsey: the financial and merchant services company Square.
The idea is not all that outrageous. After all, billionaire Elon Musk did the same with two of his companies, Tesla Motors and SolarCity, especially since the former is looking for ways to bolster its battery production and the latter struggling to gain ground in the sustainable energy market. The decision at least saves Musk from the public embarrassment of failing to find a buyer, says Forbes contributor Adam Sarhan.
Other Potential Twitter Buyers
There are, however, other scenarios that could eventually figure into a Twitter takeover bid.
AT&T, for instance, is hoping to spend as much as $50 billion to snap up businesses and possibly become a media and entertainment conglomerate. Twitter could be among its primary targets, given how AT&T rival Verizon is preparing to buy Yahoo.
Some industry observers also believe Softbank, which is looking into making media and technology investments, could jockey for position for a possible Twitter acquisition.