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Starboard Value reportedly taking ‘significant’ stake in Salesforce


Activist investor Starboard Value announced this morning that it was taking a “significant stake” in Salesforce, per CNBC. A presentation on Starboard’s website confirmed the firm’s interest in Salesforce, as well as Wix and Splunk.
The presentation looks at the company’s financial situation and concludes that it could be giving investors a better return. On the positive side, Starboard likes the company’s refreshed executive team with Bret Taylor as co-CEO.
It also likes Salesforce’s ambitious $50 billion revenue target for fiscal year 2026, but Starboard was less pleased with Salesforce’s combined growth and operating margin target of 42%. It claimed that Salesforce’s peers’ average is over 50%, and the implication is that it wants to see Salesforce closer to — or ahead of — its peer group.
Further, Starboard sees a company that has much greater scale than peer cloud companies like Workday and ServiceNow, its comparison companies. Starboard claims in the investor presentation that “despite expecting to grow slower than [these] peers, [it] is only targeting operating margins in-line to below its much smaller peers.”
“On a growth + margin basis, Salesforce significantly lags these companies …

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