PayPal says it is not pursuing Pinterest acquisition

There had been reports firm was in talks to buy the digital pinboard site for as much as $45bn

PayPal Inc is not pursuing an acquisition of Pinterest Inc at this time, the payments company said late on Sunday, responding to media reports that it was in talks to buy the digital pinboard site for as much as $45 billion (€38.7 bn).

Bloomberg News first reported on the companies’ talks last Wednesday that was later confirmed by Reuters. A source at that time told Reuters that PayPal had offered $70 per share, mostly in stock, for Pinterest.

However, sources had cautioned Reuters that no deal was certain and that the terms could change.

At the reported price, a deal would have been the biggest acquisition of a social media company, surpassing Microsoft Corp’s $26.2 billion purchase of LinkedIn in 2016.


PayPal, whose London depositary interests were up 5.2 per cent by 8.30am Irish time on Monday following the announcement, did not provide additional details in its statement.

Both companies also did not respond to requests for comment.

Paypal, among the big pandemic winners, has done a few takeover deals this year, including its $2.7 billion acquisition of Japanese buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) firm Paidy.

It also acquired Happy Returns, a company which helps online shoppers return unwanted merchandise, for an undisclosed sum in May to bolster its e-commerce offerings and build on its $4 billion acquisition of online coupon finder Honey Science in 2019.

Pinterest is at a crossroads after co-founder Evan Sharp announced earlier this month he would step down as chief creative officer to join LoveFrom, a firm led by Jony Ive, the designer of many Apple Inc products.

Paypal’s US-listed shares are down about 11.5 per cent since the news of the deal talks emerged, while Pinterest is up about 4.5 per cent. – Reuters