Rackspace Trading Halted on Report of Private Equity Talks


Trading in shares of Rackspace was halted late Thursday after Dow Jones reported that the company is in “advanced talks” with private equity players to go private.

Shares of the cloud computing and data center hosting provider (RAX) soared nearly 15% to $26.55 after the report surfaced.

San Antonio-based Rackspace is no stranger to such talk. In March, in one of the most recent examples, reports said that HP, IBM (IBM), Amazon Web Services or Microsoft may have been interested in buying the company which offers its own cloud-based services but also offers services to support users of Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT) and other clouds.

Rackspace may not be alone under that private equity microscope. Last week, news reports said that private equity firms were looking to buy some or part of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE). In June, private equity firm Vista Equity Partners announced plans to buy Ping Identity for $600 million and Thoma Bravo said it was acquiring Qlik for $3 billion. In the previous month, Vista bought Marketo, a publicly-held marketing automation software company, for $1.79 billion.

And perhaps most famously, Michael Dell, worked with Silver Lake Partners to take his then-publicly traded company private in 2013. Fast forward three years, and Dell is now engineering the acquisition of EMC, another publicly held company, in order to take it private as well. Finalization of that deal awaits approval from Chinese regulators, but it is expected to happen by October.

One underlying reason for this activity spurt? Private equity firms now appear willing to pay more for tech companies than they had in the past.

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Fortune contacted Rackspace for comment and will update this story as needed.

Update: A Rackspace spokeswoman responded by email to say that the company does not comment on “rumors and speculation.”


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