Microsoft and LinkedIn have finally disclosed their upcoming deal which is the acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft for $26.2 billion. Microsoft has agreed to pay the whole amount in cash. The pricing of this acquisition is made on the basis of the share cost of LinkedIn at $196 per share.
LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking service. Founded in December 14, 2002 and launched on May 5, 2003, it is mainly used for professional networking. As of 2015, most of the site’s revenue came from selling access to information about its users to recruiters and sales professionals. As of March 2016, LinkedIn has more than 400 million users, out of which more than 106 million are active.
This is the first biggest acquisition by Microsoft after Satya Nadella took charge as the CEO of this tech giant and hence he has taken it very personally and has been working very hard to close the deal. This deal is expected to close by the end of this calendar year.
Sources say that the company needs to talk to all its major shareholders and also gain the approval from the board of directors and then proceed to the deal closure.
“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.”
“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.”
“Today is a re-founding moment for LinkedIn. I see incredible opportunity for our members and customers and look forward to supporting this new and combined business,” said Hoffman. “I fully support this transaction and the Board’s decision to pursue it, and will vote my shares in accordance with their recommendation on it.”
Although Microsft is acquiring LinkedIn, the company will be fully independent with Jeff Weiner remaining as the CEO of LinkedIn (who will be reporting to Satya Nadella) and also Microsoft has promised that the culture of the company will not be influenced in any way.
Below is a small interview of Satya Nadella and Jeff Weiner speaking about their views on this acquisition.