Microsoft buys professional social networking service LinkedIn for $26.2B

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2016
Microsoft on Monday announced it will acquire LinkedIn in an all-cash transaction worth $26.2 billion, bringing more than 433 million members of the social networking site under the Redmond, Wash., company's banner.




LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world, and Microsoft will pay $196 per share to acquire the publicly traded company. Microsoft has vowed to allow LinkedIn to "retain its distinct brand, culture and independence" after the transaction is complete.

Jeff Weiner is set to remain LinkedIn's chief executive, and will report directly to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. The acquisition is said to be supported by both Weiner and Reid Hoffman, chairman of LinkedIn's board, co-founder and controlling shareholder. The boards of both LinkedIn and Microsoft also approved the deal.

"Just as we have changed the way the world connects to opportunity, this relationship with Microsoft, and the combination of their cloud and LinkedIn's network, now gives us a chance to also change the way the world works," Weiner said. "For the last 13 years, we've been uniquely positioned to connect professionals to make them more productive and successful, and I'm looking forward to leading our team through the next chapter of our story."

In touting the acquisition, Microsoft said that LinkedIn has grown its membership 19 percent year over year, while unique visitors now total 105 million per month. The site boasts 45 billion quarterly member page views, and more than 7 million active job listings.



"The LinkedIn team has grown a fantastic business centered on connecting the world's professionals," Nadella said. "Together we can accelerate the growth of LinkedIn, as well as Microsoft Office 365 and Dynamics as we seek to empower every person and organization on the planet."

In terms of price, Microsoft's $26.2 billion purchase of LinkedIn blows away the $8.5 billion the company spent on communications service Skype in 2011. The Windows maker is known for big-dollar acquisitions, having also bought Nokia's cell phone business for $7.2 billion back in 2013.

Microsoft's push into social networking marks an area where its rival, Apple, has struggled. Historically, Apple has shied away from high-profile acquisitions, preferring instead to build its own services.

Its most recent stab at an in-house social networking service, Apple Music Connect, is rumored to be downplayed in a forthcoming redesign of Apple Music. It's expected that Apple will unveil those changes today, as part of iOS 10, at its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote.
«13

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 49
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,677member
    LinkedIn had become annoying for me some time ago and thus avoided for the most part. They seem like a Facebook wannabe anymore, which isn't something to strive for anyway IMHO. 
    caccamuccajbdragontmay
  • Reply 2 of 49
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 18,809member
    Wow. This is a very bold move. Potentially game-changing, if they call pull it off.

    Micrsoft's previous forays into 'social' (both their own, and their 1.5% stake in Facebook in its early days, to get a seat at the table) got them nowhere. But Nadella is clearly no Ballmer.....
  • Reply 3 of 49
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,152member
    They might have as well flushed that $26B down the toilet.
    radarthekatmonstrosityTurboPGTmdriftmeyerSEngineerjbdragontdknoxphone-ui-guy
  • Reply 4 of 49
    LinkediIn is basically spam. I wish the best for Microsoft, but I think they just wasted a lot of money.
    radarthekatmonstrositylarryamike1TurboPGTawilliams87jbdragontmayphone-ui-guyRayz2016
  • Reply 5 of 49
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 16,915member
    nasserae said:
    They might have as well flushed that $26B down the toilet.
    I agree. Useless.  Linkedin is nothing but a toy.  I've never gotten anywhere with it, and I've been on it for years.  It's a site where we all get to pretend we're in some important network of professionals.   Good luck, MicroShaft.  
    tmaysteinm88299
  • Reply 6 of 49
    badmonkbadmonk Posts: 742member
    This makes Beats look like a steal.  This is why I am an Apple investor.
    radarthekatTurboPGTnolamacguymdriftmeyerjbdragonphone-ui-guypscooter63baconstang
  • Reply 7 of 49
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 2,897moderator
    I didn't get any warm fuzzies reading Satya's letter to MSFT employees justifying the acquisition.  In fact, the merits look rather weak and contrived.  

  • Reply 8 of 49
    macapfelmacapfel Posts: 494member
    WOW, this is a LOT of money. I also regard LinkedIn more as spam. Just trashed one invitation today. I also not hear my colleagues talk about it much. In fact: not at all. I am wondering where this is going, but also think there are hotter companies to buy for this truck full of money.
    jbdragon
  • Reply 9 of 49
    They want to learn how to better annoy people with Win 10 upgrade notices?

    But seriously...this acquisition makes little sense. 
  • Reply 10 of 49
    jmgregory1jmgregory1 Posts: 450member
    They want to learn how to better annoy people with Win 10 upgrade notices?

    But seriously...this acquisition makes little sense. 
    Of course it makes sense.  MS needs the social connectivity, specifically of business people, to attempt to get back what they used to own - the minds and pocketbooks of business.  It's been slipping through their hands since IT departments began to allow employees to use their own devices.  
    potatoleeksoup
  • Reply 11 of 49
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,182member
    I closed my LinkedIn account just after it materialised that they used unsalted passwords. 

    Amateurs.
  • Reply 12 of 49
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,677member
    macapfel said:
    WOW, this is a LOT of money. I also regard LinkedIn more as spam. Just trashed one invitation today. I also not hear my colleagues talk about it much. In fact: not at all. I am wondering where this is going, but also think there are hotter companies to buy for this truck full of money.
    Techs are sitting on a whole lotta money at the moment, much more than any company could possibly need in some cases. Heck, Symantec just paid nearly $5B, all cash, to acquire Blue Coat. This won't be the last big buy we see from a tech company flush with cash over then next 6 months IMO. 
    edited June 2016
  • Reply 13 of 49
    snailersnailer Posts: 50member
    Just deleted my LinkedIn account, buh-bye! This was the last straw after the latest password breach.
    edited June 2016 radarthekat
  • Reply 14 of 49
    zroger73zroger73 Posts: 696member
    LI is creepy. Years ago, it somehow made a profile for me that has continued to develop itself over the years. The way it comes up with suggested contacts seems magical. I can correspond with someone through email at work then a few days later that person will pop up as a "Do you know [name of person]?" on an email from LI. I'm 99.9% sure my work computer is squeaky clean and I'm much more careful than the average user about such things. Still, LI seems to know far more about me than I prefer. I've mostly dismissed it for years, but this news is motivation to see about removing my existence from LI.
  • Reply 15 of 49
    larryalarrya Posts: 533member
    LinkediIn is basically spam. I wish the best for Microsoft, but I think they just wasted a lot of money.
    Yes, and I closed my account the last time I got annoyed with the constant attempts to harvest my contacts. 
  • Reply 16 of 49
    Buying an ecosystem? Want the followers.
  • Reply 17 of 49
    rwesrwes Posts: 155member
    larrya said:
    LinkediIn is basically spam. I wish the best for Microsoft, but I think they just wasted a lot of money.
    Yes, and I closed my account the last time I got annoyed with the constant attempts to harvest my contacts. 
    The constant attempt to "harvest my contacts" is one of my biggest issues with the (iOS) software. I like how every so often, they'll update the software and change how they ask you to -scan LinkedIn- for your contacts. I can only assume that for some large majority of people, it works (for LinkedIn).
  • Reply 18 of 49
    rfrmacrfrmac Posts: 85member
    Well, isn't it interesting that Microsoft has this kind of money to spend on software like this. Four years ago I was into Linkedin. I truly thought it would help. Slowly I realized that a great deal of the information could not be trusted. Especially in the area of people recommending people. I will be interesting to see if Nadella runs this acquisition better than what has happened in the past.
  • Reply 19 of 49
    That's very interesting. LinkedIn was building its own building in the heart of SF. I guess I can count on that being a Microsoft building.
    newtonrj
  • Reply 20 of 49
    ceek74ceek74 Posts: 323member
    This is great news!...for the executive staff of LinkedIn.
    monstrositybaconstang
Sign In or Register to comment.