By Sheila Dang 

  (Reuters) – Twitter Inc said on Tuesday it acquired Slack competitor Quill to help the social networking company improve its own messaging tools. 

  The acquisition comes as Twitter recently named a new chief executive Parag Agrawal to replace co-founder Jack Dorsey, who stepped down from the top role last week. Agrawal, who had served as chief technology officer, is expected to bring a greater focus on engineering to the company. 

  Slack, owned by Salesforce, has become a common online workplace messaging tool used by many companies. Quill emerged as a possible competitor for the messaging app this year. 

  The Quill team will help Twitter improve its direct messaging tool and make it a "more useful & expressive way people can have conversations on the service," said Nick Caldwell, Twitter's general manager for core technology, in a tweet on Tuesday. 

  Quill said in a blog post that its service will shut down as the team integrates into Twitter. 

  (Reporting by Sheila Dang in Dallas; Editing by Aurora Ellis) 

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