Microsoft is understood to have approached social media giant Pinterest to discuss a potential $51 billion takeover.
Pinterest, which has seen its stock price nearly quadruple over the past year, would have represented Microsoft’s biggest ever acquisition.
However, according to a Financial Times report, the talks are no longer active and it is understood that Pinterest wants to remain an independent company.
Launched in 2010, Pinterest works by allowing its users to create “boards” of curated images expressing their personal interests, through which retailers can attempt to sell them products.
Like its social media rivals Instagram and Facebook, Pinterest has been attempting to push further into the ecommerce sphere over the past few years, updating its platform to make it easier for both sellers to advertise their wares and potential customers to find them.
In 2018 it introduced “shopping pins” on images, which allow users to link directly to a retailer’s website, reportedly leading to a 40 per cent rise in click throughs.
Microsoft has in turn been attempting to add socially-focused digital brands to its portfolio in recent years, becoming one of the main contenders to acquire TikTok’s US arm last year.