SAP Plans to Take Qualtrics Public

Two years after acquiring Qualtrics, SAP intends to spin out the company in a planned IPO.

Qualtrics is a provider of software for customer experience and experience management, helping organizations manage and improve the four core experiences of business—customer, employee, product, and brand.The Qualtrics XM Platform is a system that aims to help  businesses attract customers who stay longer and buy more, engage employees who build a positive culture, develop breakthrough products people love, and build a brand people are passionate about. 

The initative was announced in July 2020 and the paperwork was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on December 28, 2020.

At the time of the acquisition in 2018, the companies said their goal was to accelerate the new experience management (XM) category by combining experience data and operational data to power the experience economy. XM focuses on obtaining and tapping the value of outside-in customer, employee, product, and brand feedback.

Under the terms of the agreement, SAP acquired all outstanding shares of Qualtrics for $8 billion in cash.

“We continually seek out transformational opportunities,” said Bill McDermott, who was CEO of SAP at the time. “Together, SAP and Qualtrics represent a new paradigm, similar to market-making shifts in personal operating systems, smart devices and social networks."

SAP agreed to acquire Qualtrics just 4 days before Qualtrics was to go public in 2018.

In the July announcement, the companies said SAP will retain majority ownership of Qualtrics and has no intention of spinning off or otherwise divesting its majority ownership interest, and that Qualtrics founder Ryan Smith intends to be Qualtrics’ largest individual shareholder.

"SAP is fully committed to Experience Management and the Qualtrics XM Platform as a key element of its Intelligent Enterprise Strategy. SAP will remain Qualtrics’ closest and most important co-innovation and go-to-market partner," the July announcement said.

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