Microsoft unveils plan to buy LinkedIn for $26.2b

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  • onday it signed a deal to acquire the professional social network LinkedIn for $26.2 billion in cash.

“This deal brings together the world’s leading professional cloud with the world’s leading professional network,” Microsoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella said in a statement.

According to a statement from the two firms, LinkedIn “will retain its distinct brand, culture and independence”, with Jeff Weiner remained at CEO of LinkedIn.

“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 said.

The two firms said they had reached a “definitive” agreement that would close later this year, with the support of LinkedIn Chairman and controlling shareholder Reid Hoffman.

The move comes with Microsoft refocusing its efforts away from being a pure software firm, and LinkedIn seeking ways to boost growth.

LinkedIn, which enables members to connect with similar-minded professionals and facilitates job hunting, has some 433 million members worldwide.

Also on Monday, Nokia said it has signed a 1.36-billion-euro ($1.53 billion) frame agreement with China Mobile to create a “cloud network” for the Chinese operator.

The deal would entail “seamless connectivity that will more efficiently meet the ever-growing data demands of its subscriber base”, the Finnish telecom equipment giant said in a statement.

Nokia is to deliver a new type of base station which allows the use of multiple radio technologies simultaneously and is scalable to support all connection speeds from the oldest to the upcoming, ultra-fast 5G networks and connected objects.

China Mobile is the world’s largest mobile operator and one of three public operators in the Chinese market.

Nokia, the world’s former number one in handsets, now concentrates on network equipment.

The deal was signed in Beijing at the Sino-German Economic Forum by Li Huidi, China Mobile’s vice president, and Hans-Juergen Bill, head of Nokia Networks in Germany, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel and China’s Prime Minister Li Keqiang present.

It “strengthens Nokia’s position as a leading provider of next-generation technologies in China”, said Nokia’s Mike Wang who leads operations in China.

Listed both in the Hong Kong and New York stock exchanges, China Mobile had around 835 million mobile clients in April.

 

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