uploads///Slack WORK stock

Slack Stock Sinks on Legal Trouble, Growth Worries

Mike Sonnenberg - Author

Sep. 9 2019, Published 3:46 p.m. ET

Today, Slack (WORK) stock has been getting crushed after opening marginally higher. At 12:44 PM ET, the stock was trading at $24.4, down 10.9%. At the same time, the broader S&P 500 Index (SPY) was down 0.21%. The Nasdaq was down 0.45%.

Today’s fall is Slack stock’s third straight fall since it announced its fiscal 2020 second-quarter earnings results on September 4 after the market closed. Over the last three trading sessions, the stock has lost over 20%. Today’s fall also places Slack stock below the $26 price set by the NYSE for its public debut. Interestingly, it opened much higher at $38.5 on its debut.

Article continues below advertisement

Legal trouble for Slack?

Over the weekend, Los Angeles’s Schall Law Firm announced that it was looking into a potential violation of securities law by Slack. The firm will investigate whether Slack misled investors and failed to make adequate disclosures. It’s inviting investors with over $100,000 in losses to come forward. Robbins Arroyo LLP, another firm, is also investigating Slack’s management and board members for potential violations of securities law.

Slack’s growth worries in the foreground

Ever since Slack announced its second-quarter earnings results, the focus has shifted to its growth and path to profitability. The former is slowing, and the latter is still unclear.

During the second quarter of fiscal 2020, Slack reported 58% revenue growth. While this growth looks solid, it points to a severe slowdown. Worse, going by its full-year guidance, Slack’s revenue growth is expected to fall to ~50% in fiscal 2020. In comparison, the company’s revenue rose over 100% in fiscal 2018 and 82% in fiscal 2019.

Even after considering today’s fall, Slack is valued at over $12 billion, or more than 20x its fiscal 2020 expected revenue. That’s huge in comparison to 4x commanded by Uber (UBER), Slack’s Softbank Vision Fund cousin. Both companies have yet to show any profit.

Article continues below advertisement

Analysts are getting less bullish on Slack

Compared to a month ago, analysts look less bullish on Slack. As of today, nine analysts recommend “buys,” while seven recommend “holds” on the stock. Its median target price has fallen to $37 from $40 a month ago. Its average target price has fallen to $36.57 from $39.55 a month ago.

On September 6, Stephens cut Slack’s target price from $43 to $37, citing growth concerns. Chatter about the company’s growth concerns is rising as rival Microsoft Teams (MSFT) seems to be pulling ahead in the collaborative platform race. In July, Microsoft announced that Teams had crossed 13 million daily active users.

Is Softbank approaching a hard landing?

Slack helped Masayoshi Son’s Softbank Vision Fund (SFTBY) report $5.5 billion in unrealized gains in the first quarter of fiscal 2020. However, the fund’s fortunes seem to have reversed in the current quarter.

Slack, its star in the last quarter, has been on a downtrend since the beginning of July. Uber, which caused losses for the fund in the previous quarter, has fallen further in the current quarter. However, the biggest shock may come from WeWork. Last week, I wrote about the possibility of WeWork shelving billions from its valuation in its path to going public. In short, the current quarter may be forgettable for the fund.

Microsoft has signed up to be a limited partner in Softbank’s Vision Fund 2. The $108 billion fund will focus on AI startups.


Latest Microsoft Corp News and Updates

    © Copyright 2022 Market Realist. Market Realist is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.