| 2016-10-06 06:02:40|
CRM, TWTR… 06:02 10/06 10/06/16
Citi says Salesforce buying Twitter 'nearly impossible' above $28/share
Citi analyst Walter Pritchard believes a Salesforce (CRM) acquisition of Twitter (TWTR) is possible financially but that such a deal would put "significant constraints" on the company for the next three-plus years. The analyst sees "very little reason" for Salesforce to own Twitter and feels the acquisition "would pose a difficult decision" for CEO Marc Benioff and the board. Salesforce closed yesterday down 6%, or $4.21, to $68.42. Recode reported last night that the company is likely the only bidder left for Twitter after Disney (DIS) and Alphabet (GOOG) opted not to pursue a deal while Apple (AAPL) is unlikely. Twitter in pre-market trading is down 14% to $21.50. In order for Salesforce to avoid a shareholder vote, it would have to borrow $7.5B to fund the transaction if Twitter were valued at $20B, or $27.50-$28 per share, Pritchard tells investors in a research note. This is a level that likely constrains the company with little additional borrowing capacity for other deals, the analyst contends. He thinks the deal is "nearly impossible to do" for Salesforce should the bidding for Twitter go above $20B or $28 per share. Pritchard has a Buy rating on Salesforce with an $89 price target.