Professional networking site LinkedIn has acquired CardMunch, a startup that supplies technology for scanning and transcribing business cards.
The technology is aimed at helping users to manage business contacts by scanning business cards and storing the information digitally.
"LinkedIn is the world's largest professional network and as such, provides the perfect platform for us to execute the CardMunch vision," the company said in a statement.
LinkedIn does not plan to use the CardMunch application as a revenue spinner, but it is likely to be used to bring business card information into LinkedIn itself, according to the New York Times.
This could help LinkedIn turn into the "professional dashboard" that chief executive Jeff Weiner has suggested, the paper said.
According to US reports, LinkedIn could be the first social network company to be floated on the stock market.
The social networking has been quietly preparing an initial public offering for as early as the first three months of this year, the reports said.