Jeff Ubben’s Inclusive Capital takes stake in Salesforce as more activists target the software giant

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Signage on a Saleforce office building in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Jeff Ubben of Inclusive Capital had talks with Marc Benioff, the CEO of Salesforce, according to sources, CNBC’s David Faber reported Monday.

Inclusive Capital has a stake in the CRM giant. It’s unclear what Ubben’s presence will mean for the cloud-based software company.

Salesforce has also attracted activist investor Elliott Management’s interest, which made a multibillion dollar investment, the Wall Street Journal reported late Sunday. In October, Starboard Value announced an undisclosed stake in Salesforce, saying the company was suffering from a valuation discount due to a “subpar mix of growth and profitability.”

Salesforce is in the middle of restructuring amid slowing growth and recession fears. Earlier this year, the firm said it planned to cut jobs by 10%, or 700 employees, and close some offices.

Salesforce said it expects its employee restructuring to be complete by the end of the 2024 fiscal year and real estate restructuring to finish in the 2026 fiscal year.

The company had expanded rapidly during the pandemic and the years before as cloud adoption skyrocketed. It also completed large acquisitions such as Slack and Tableau.

The company’s share price has climbed 14% this year but is off over 30% in the past year.

Clarification: Jeff Ubben had previously disclosed his stake in Salesforce.

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