Zendesk to be acquired by investor group in $10.2bn deal

24 Jun 2022

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Zendesk, which has its EMEA HQ in Dublin, will become a private company after the deal.

Customer service software company Zendesk has agreed to an acquisition by an investor group for $10.2bn, in an all-cash transaction that will turn it into a private company.

The investor group is led by global investment firms Permira and Hellman & Friedman. The group’s offer represents a premium of around 34pc over Zendesk’s closing stock price on 23 June. Under the terms of the agreement, Zendesk shareholders will receive $77.50 per share.

San Francisco-based Zendesk, which opened its $10m EMEA headquarters in Dublin in 2018, has been going through a tumultuous period recently.

Last October, it shared plans to acquire Momentive, the parent company of SurveyMonkey, in an attempt to create a “powerful new customer intelligence company”.

However, the $4bn transaction was terminated in February after Zendesk’s investors rejected the deal. In the same month, the company turned down an unsolicited bid to be acquired itself for $17bn.

Zendesk founder and CEO Mikkel Svane said the acquisition deal announced today (24 June) marks “the start of a new chapter” for the company, with partners that are aligned with the “strength of our agile products and talented team”.

“With Hellman & Friedman and Permira’s support, we’ll continue to execute on our long-term strategy with our customers as our top priority, taking full advantage of the opportunity we see to help businesses navigate the ever changing expectations and demands of their customers,” Svane added.

The transaction has been unanimously approved by Zendesk’s board of directors and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year. The deal is subject to customary closing conditions, including Zendesk stockholder approval.

“We see tremendous value in Zendesk’s platform and ability to grow at scale,” Hellman & Friedman partner Tarim Wasim said. “Its intuitive yet powerful offering serves over 100,000 companies, ranging from the smallest businesses to the largest enterprises.”

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic