In tech industry there is a hot debate for a week. Slack’s latest acquisition of HipChat and Stride from Atlassian shows that there is a steps towards to more competition between workplace chat services, not quantitatively but qualitatively. What does it mean? Usually, when a big company acquired a smaller one, we can expect to observe less competition, but it is not just about the number of firms in a market, also about the functionality of these firms. For better understanding, let’s take a look at some developments at workplace chat services.
2010: Atlassian introduced HipChat for interval private online chat.
2014: Slack has founded and has grown aggressively.
March 2016: Microsoft designed Teams to provide complete coordination of workplace with services such as messaging, meeting setting and attachments in one app, and obviously it was a rival for Slack.
September 2017: Stride, cloud-based version of HipChat announced by Atlassian, as an attempt to grab a place in the growing competition between Slack and Microsoft and tried to converse users from HipChat to Stride.
March 2018: Microsoft announced that Teams is being used by 200.000 teams.
May 2018: Slack announced that its software is used by 8.000.000 active members and 3 millions of them are paid accounts. They have also reported that Slack reached 500.000 teams, which is more than twice of the Microsoft’s Teams.
July 2018: Microsoft announced that Teams is available in 40 different languages.
And in last week, on 26th of July, Joff Redfern, VP of Product Management in Atlassian, announced a new partnership with Slack at Atlassian’s blog.
Slack purchased IP behind HipChat and Stride, aiming to converse users from these services to Slack by February 2019, date in which HipChat and Stride discontinue. How much of the users will be transfer to Slack? It is a tough question and a real challenge for Slack in next 6 months because there are unhappy users of HipChat at community.atlassian.com about this acquisition.
After now, Atlassian will focus on other products/areas, in where they perform better, such as Trello. Because simply they weren’t simply competitive enough to compete with Slack and Microsoft. On the other hand, what we have witnessed in last week was an acquisition of a competitor and process of shutting it down, but as opposed to popular belief, this acquisition will increase the quality of competition in workplace chat industry between Slack and Microsoft’s Teams. One of the defining milestones of this competition will be the numbers will come from Slack and Microsoft Teams at the end of the 2019 Q1.
At this very point, a question arises itself unavoidably: How to monitor the competition? Different markets of constant change shows that the most important thing on being a master in competitive intelligence requires a tool that never misses out anything!