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Tae Kim

Zoom’s $100 Billion Deal Muscle Sets Up Cloud Showdown with Salesforce

The videoconferencing company’s willingness to use its elevated stock as currency for purchases like software maker Five9 signals big ambitions that pose a serious threat to Salesforce.

Zoom’s videoconference tools made it a pandemic darling. Now, it has bigger ambitions.

Zoom’s videoconference tools made it a pandemic darling. Now, it has bigger ambitions.

Photographer: SOPA Images/Getty Images

Salesforce.com Inc. helped Zoom Video Communications Inc. get off to a good start when it invested in the startup’s IPO roughly two years ago. But with the videoconferencing company now looming as a serious threat in cloud software, Salesforce may regret its initial support.

Zoom announced an agreement late Sunday to acquire cloud call-center software maker Five9 Inc. for $14.7 billion in an all-stock transaction. The rationale for the merger makes sense. Customer-support software is a complementary market to many of Zoom’s communication products — especially Zoom Phone. So there are clear opportunities to cross-sell into Five9’s more than 2,000 corporate customers.