Scuttlebutt: Microsoft Was Once Very Close To Buying LinkedIn For A Couple Billion Dollars
In the years before LinkedIn's 2011 IPO, Microsoft entered into talks to buy LinkedIn several times.
At one point the deal was close to happening for around $500 million.Microsoft's last offer, in the months before LinkedIn's IPO, was somewhere close to $2 billion.
We're told Microsoft's (now departed) deal whiz Hank Vigil thought that was a price too dear, and refused to pull the trigger.
Vigil declined to comment, other than to say: "Good luck with your story." Thank you, Hank.
LinkedIn PR's response, to paraphrase, has been: Huh. That was a long time ago.
But it's still interesting, right?Anyway, today, LinkedIn is a $25 billion public company.
In some ways, it might still be a great fit for Microsoft.
New CEO Satya Nadella's whole plan is to re-shape the company around "productivity" and "the cloud."
Basically, lots of industries still happily use Microsoft Office applications, and Nadella wants to make those applications and a thousand more available on every device from tablets to conference rooms to phones, powered by Microsoft's cloud infrastructure.
It would make a lot of sense for your LinkedIn account to be your real-name user ID for all of those applications and services.
It would probably cost Microsoft at least $35 billion to make that happen today.