Microsoft to buy LinkedIn for $26.2B in cash, makes big move into enterprise social media
Microsoft announced today that it plans to acquire LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion. According to Microsoft, LinkedIn will retain its own brand and independence, and its existing CEO Jeff Weiner will remain and report directly to Satya Nadella; the current CEO of Microsoft.
LinkedIn is the world’s largest and most valuable professional network and continues to build a strong and growing business. Acquisition of Lynda.com an e-learning platform and rollout of new versions of its Recruiter product to enterprise customers has resulted in 19% growth year over year(YOY), reaching more than 433 million members worldwide.
According to the press release, there has also been 9% growth YOY to more than 105 million unique visiting members per month, 49% growth YOY to 60 percent mobile usage 34% growth YOY to more than 45 billion quarterly member page views. And finally, 101% growth YOY to more than 7 million active job listings.
On the growth and proposed acquisition, Satya Nadella said,
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“The LinkedIn team has grown a fantastic business centered on connecting the world’s professionals. 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.”
Microsoft is planning to close its acquisition later this year as the deal has been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies.
Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn pledged his support and enthusiasm to the deal. According to him,
“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. 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.”
Satya Nadella and Jeff Weiner on Microsoft acquiring LinkedIn
Microsoft and LinkedIn will host a joint conference call with investors later today to discuss the transaction. The call that will be broadcast live is to be hosted by Satya Nadella and Jeff Weiner, as well as Microsoft Chief Financial Officer Amy Hood and Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith.