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Microsoft announced on Monday morning that it would acquire LinkedIn in a $26.2bn cash deal.
The acquisition, by far the largest in Microsoft’s history, will see LinkedIn maintain its brand with Jeff Weiner remaining on as CEO, reporting to Microsoft chief Satya Nadella. The transaction is expected to close this calendar year.
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LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network and contains a veritable goldmine of data, with recruiters paying thousands of pounds per month to gain access to its secrets.
The social platform has seen 19% growth year over year and now boasts 433 million members worldwide. While Microsoft and LinkedIn’s businesses of fundamentally different, they both get the majority of their revenue from the enterprise.
“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 organisation 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 commented. “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.”
Upon closing, Microsoft expects LinkedIn’s financials to be reported as part of Microsoft’s Productivity and Business Processes segment.