Activist Investor Elliott Takes a Stake in Struggling Salesforce

Elliott Investment Management, a U.S.-based activist investor firm, has bought a significant stake in Salesforce, the business software giant coming off a challenging 2022. Headquartered in West Palm Beach, Florida, Elliott typically invests in underperforming companies and promotes new growth strategies.

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One underwhelming branch of Salesforce that may look appealing is the workplace messaging app, Slack, which was purchased in 2021 for $27.7 billion and has shown less promise than expected.

The investment firm has indicated that it is looking forward to a constructive relationship.

Despite the friendly words, Elliott, led by founder and co-chief executive Paul Singer, has a reputation for its aggressive tactics. In 2021, British pharma company GSK (formerly GlaxoSmithKline) was forced to reevaluate its CEO, Emma Walmsley, at the beginning of Elliott’s restructuring. Similarly, the firm was skeptical of the weak business plan of the U.K. energy company, SSE, in which it has a small stake.

The stalwart Salesforce, worth around $151 billion, has struggled recently, and Elliott is not its first activist investor. In October 2021, Starboard Value took an undisclosed stake in the company, which said Salesforce was losing value due to a “subpar mix of growth and profitability.”