Microsoft to acquire Skype

SkypeMicrosoft are to acquire Skype in what is a $8.5bn deal, and I think will add to Microsoft portfolio, especially with 600 million plus users of Skype around the world, many of who have likely migrated from the likes of Windows Live Messenger, Yahoo Messenger and AOL Messenger to the Skype service.

“Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: “MSFT”) and Skype Global S.à r.l today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire Skype, the leading Internet communications company, for $8.5 billion in cash from the investor group led by Silver Lake. The agreement has been approved by the boards of directors of both Microsoft and Skype.

The acquisition will increase the accessibility of real-time video and voice communications, bringing benefits to both consumers and enterprise users and generating significant new business and revenue opportunities. The combination will extend Skype’s world-class brand and the reach of its networked platform, while enhancing Microsoft’s existing portfolio of real-time communications products and services.”

The below quoted Microsoft Lync was something I was chatting to a colleague about today when I first heard the rumour of this acquisition of Skype by Microsoft and before the actual press release, so my crystal ball is working ok. Having seen a live demo of Lync in action at Microsoft UK last year, I thought it would add a huge consumer base of users that could access Lync.

“Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Microsoft will continue to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms.”

Will also be interesting to see a tie-in application on Windows mobile 7 phones.

Full Press Release HERE at Microsoft Press Office