Microsoft Corp. announced Monday they will purchase LinkedIn Corp. for a total value of $26.2 billion at $196 per share, in an all-cash transaction by the end of the year.
LinkedIn, the world’s largest and most profitable social network for professionals, will “retain its distinct brand, culture and independence,” according to a press statement released by Microsoft.
LinkedIn’s CEO, Jeff Weiner, will uphold his current position while also directly reporting to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.
According to Business Insider, LinkedIn shares shot up more than 47% following news of the acquisition when the market opened this morning.
In an email addressed to all Microsoft employees, Nadella explained how “this deal brings together the world’s leading professional cloud with the world’s leading professional network.”
Since being appointed CEO of Microsoft in 2014, Nadella has been repositioning Microsoft as a “productivity and platform company for the mobile-first and cloud-first world.” With LinkedIn’s robust data on professional social graphs and recent investments in professional development learning platforms, such as Lynda.com, LinkedIn “offers Microsoft a way to layer relationships and content over its existing productivity infrastructure,” according to Fast Company.
You can read Microsoft’s LinkedIn announcement in its entirety here, or listen to Nadella and Weiner discuss the acquisition in the interview below: