PayPal said to be exploring potential acquisition of Pinterest

In what would be a blockbuster acquisition, PayPal is reportedly exploring the purchase of social media company Pinterest, according to Bloomberg.

According to the publication, San Jose, California-based PayPal has “recently approached” Pinterest about a potential buyout.

Citing an anonymous source, Bloomberg said PayPal could pay around $70 a share, which would value Pinterest at about $39 billion.

Pinterest declined to comment on the report. PayPal had not responded to requests for comment as of press time.

Pinterest’s stock jumped by about 12% on the news, trading at just above $62 by midday Wednesday. That’s still down from a 52-week high of $89.90. 

The rumored purchase price would be in line with Pinterest’s current market cap of $40 billion. For its part, PayPal has a market cap of $308 billion.

Last month, PayPal announced an acquisition of Paidy, a Japanese buy now, pay later (BNPL) service platform, for approximately $2.7 billion (300 billion yen), mostly in cash, to enhance its business in Japan. In November of 2019, PayPal announced plans to acquire Honey Science Corporation, the makers of a deal-finding browser add-on and mobile application, for $4 billion.

Its plans to potentially acquire Pinterest make more sense than one might think at first glance.

Over the past 18 months or so, Pinterest has made a concerted effort to expand into an e-commerce platform, launching several new features. In April 2020, the company launched a new way to shop on its platform, giving Pinterest users the ability to browse in-stock inventory from newly added “Shop” tabs on Search and on Pinterest boards. The company also improved visual search to make more products shoppable from Pins.

Earlier this month, Pinterest said it was rolling out new features for advertisers and brands to promote their products to users on its site. The launch marked the company’s latest initiative to grow online shopping and advertising on its platform.

On October 14, Pinterest announced that co-founder Evan Sharp was exiting his full-time role with the company, where he had served as chief design & creative officer, in order to join Jony Ive at his new creative collective, LoveFrom. Sharp has moved into an advisory role with Pinterest, which will focus on company strategy, product, design, brand and culture. He will also continue to serve on Pinterest’s board of directors.