Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) may be looking to compete with the likes of Facebook. Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) and Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT)
Slack, a cloud-based set of team collaboration tools and services has generated interest from several tech giants. According to Business Insider, Amazon has shown interest in buying out the workplace communications app, valuing the acquisition at $9 billion.
There are several reasons why the move could be advantageous for Amazon. The company could establish itself in the communications business, a largely ignored market. Amazon Web Services is already a leader in the cloud computing market. Not only can developers manage apps on the service, but with the addition of Slack, they can store them as well, creating a streamline process under one company.
With Alexa, Amazon has also gained a foothold in the voice command platform. The Echo is used in many homes and hotels, and next, it could very well dominate the workplace. Colleagues would be able to dictate messages and calendar events in the office and at home. Slack also provides the potential to advertise Amazon’s office supplies, which Alexa simplifies.
The change from email to messaging apps is clearly defined by the rise of Slack. The startup has gained popularity with 5 million daily active users and 1.5 million are paying for its premium services. Slack is Amazon’s ticket to creating its own messaging platform that could expand beyond the workplace and compete with popular chat apps like Facebook.
While there is the possibility for extreme growth for both companies, Slack’s founders are reluctant to sell the company that they have “built to be the next Microsoft.” Amazon may also find itself unable to compete with Facebook, Google, and Microsoft.