It’s official, from March 2019, Stride and HipChat users will have to switch to Slack. The $5 billion collaborative discussion platform signs a new partnership with Atlassian. A strategic move not to compete with Microsoft’s messaging Teams.
Atlassian and Slack announced their brand new partnership in a press release published on August 16, 2018. The acquisition of HipChat and Stride, created in 2017 by Altassian, is proving to be strategic to strengthen Slack’s position against Microsoft’s Teams, its biggest competitor that continues to conquer organizations, and has just released its free version.
Preparing the smooth replacement of HipChat and Stride
The announcement of this acquisition is accompanied by a closing date for both platforms: 16 March 2019. The amount of the transaction has not been specified, but according to the Financial Times, Slack will spread payments over the next 3 years, and Atlassian will be one of the new company’s shareholder. The platform for collaborative discussions for businesses (and individuals, rarer) says that “Slack has been using Atlassian products for years, and Atlassian’s 2500 employees will start using Slack. We are committed to making the same operation as easy as possible for our customers.”
Everyone wins: Slack removes one of its competitors from the market to consolidate its leadership position and Atlassian can continue to develop new technical solutions to improve the platform with its teams. Initially, the goal will be to reinforce certain integrations between Slack and Jira Cloud, Bitbucket Cloud and Trello, then to think about other Atlassian product integrations. The two “partners” should say a little more at the Atlassian conference in Madrid, October 4 to 7, 2018.
A strategic response to competitor Microsoft
This partnership looks like a strategic reinforcement operation for Slack, facing the place occupied by its rival Microsoft with its collaborative work tool Teams. Launched for good in 2017, Microsoft’s business discussion platform is based on Skype and Office, enabling it to offer a range of services with which its customers are already familiar. In a little over a year, the application has developed in no less than 140 countries and has been available in 36 languages.
Since July 14, 2018, the free version of Teams, which mainly targets VSEs and SMEs (300 users maximum per workspace), could propel it even more to the forefront. Microsoft claims 200,000 user organizations, and 100 million active users. Direct access to video calls, cloud, email in conversations and calendars with Skype, OneDrive, Outlook and Office calendars is a particularly comprehensive and attractive service. Especially since Teams is part of some subscriptions to the Office 365 suite.
Slack vs Teams
However, while Teams is doing well in making up for lost time, Slack remains ahead, with 500,000 organizations using him. The latter has 8 million active users per day, including 3 million who pay. For the start-up, valued at 5.1 billion dollars since July 2017, this new acquisition could well increase its value on the market, and compensate a little for the lack of evolution since the arrival of its biggest competitor. In addition, it also has integrated external services, since its collaboration with Google announced in December 2016: Git Hub, Google Drive and Dropbox allow it to maintain competition at the level of information storage against Microsoft’s wide panel.
Other similar platforms are developing. Facebook has entered this market with Workplace, but it has just over 30,000 registered organizations, making it a competitor. It is nevertheless trying to gain ground by announcing the acquisition of Redkix on Thursday 28 July 2018. The amount of the transaction has not been disclosed, but this Israeli courier service will close to strengthen Workspace. A smaller operation than that of Slack, but which shows that this last one does not frighten newcomers on this market.