By Will Shanklin
Slack co-founder and CEO Stewart Butterfield is leaving the company in January. Lidiane Jones, currently an executive VP at parent company Salesforce, will succeed Butterfield as CEO.
The move comes just days after Salesforce announced that its CEO, Bret Taylor, will also leave in early 2023. However, Butterfield says the actions are unrelated. “FWIW: This has nothing to do with Bret’s departure. Planning has been in the works for several months! Just weird timing,” he wrote in an internal Slack channel today, viewed by Business Insider.
Slack launched in 2013 and quickly established itself as the predominant work-chat app. But today, it faces stiff competition from Microsoft Teams, which has nearly doubled its daily users in each of the past two years. In 2020, Slack filed an antitrust complaint against Microsoft with the European Commission, claiming its bundling of Teams with the Office suite gave it an unfair advantage (echoing antitrust cases against Microsoft for bundling Internet Explorer with Windows). Later that year, Salesforce announced it was buying Slack for $27.7 billion, its biggest acquisition to date.
A Salesforce spokesperson told in a company statement to TechCrunch today, “Stewart is an incredible leader who created an amazing, beloved company in Slack. He has helped lead the successful integration of Slack into Salesforce and today Slack is woven into the Salesforce Customer 360 platform.”