Negócio fechado – Microsoft compra a Skype…
… e passa à frente da Google e do Facebook
Os rumores sobre uma possível aquisição da Skype por um dos gigantes da industria eram certos e estavam a ganhar forma. Os concorrentes identificados foram à partida dois pesos pesados que apenas teriam a ganhar com a integração da rede Skype e tudo o que ela representa em clientes. Google e Facebook estavam na corrida e tudo parecia encaminhado para que a compra fosse possível.
Mas como os rumores podem sofrer reveses, o negócio teve um desfecho que poucos consideravam provável. A Microsoft numa jogada audaz, conseguiu suplantar a concorrência e acabou por adquirir a Skype. O negócio foi terminado ontem ao final do dia e foi agora anunciado de forma oficial!
Os contornos finais do negócio ainda estão no segredo dos deuses, mas a Microsoft anunciou já, numa nota de imprensa, que adquiriu a Skype por 8.5 mil milhões de dólares.
Do pouco que se sabe já desta aquisição, a Microsoft vai integrar todas as potencialidades do Skype na sua XBox e no Kinect. O Windows Phone 7 será outra zona onde a Microsoft irá com certeza integrar o Skype.
A aquisição vai levar à criação de uma nova divisão de desenvolvimento dentro da Microsoft, onde serão recebidos os novos elementos da Skype que agora vão integrar a Microsoft. O responsável por este novo departamento será o actual CEO da Skype, Tony Bates.
A Microsoft compromete-se a continuar todo o desenvolvimento que tem vindo a ser feito, para que o Skype continue a ser suportado por todas as plataformas e sistemas operativos onde actualmente corre.
Este negócio, apesar de estar já firmado e confirmado dentro das duas empresas, apenas estará completo no final deste ano e apenas após essa altura são esperadas novidades.
A Microsoft mais uma vez consegue impor a sua vontade e mostrar que não está parada a ver o que as outras companhias fazem. Tomou uma atitude firme e conseguiu assim suplantar os concorrentes.
Microsoft to Acquire Skype
Combined companies will benefit consumers, businesses and increase market opportunity.
REDMOND, Wash., and LUXEMBOURG – May 10, 2011 – 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.
With 170 million connected users and over 207 billion minutes of voice and video conversations in 2010, Skype has been a pioneer in creating rich, meaningful connections among friends, families and business colleagues globally. Microsoft has a long-standing focus and investment in real-time communications across its various platforms, including Lync (which saw 30 percent revenue growth in Q3), Outlook, Messenger, Hotmail and Xbox LIVE.
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.
“Skype is a phenomenal service that is loved by millions of people around the world,” said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. “Together we will create the future of real-time communications so people can easily stay connected to family, friends, clients and colleagues anywhere in the world.”
Skype will become a new business division within Microsoft, and Skype CEO Tony Bates will assume the title of president of the Microsoft Skype Division, reporting directly to Ballmer.
“Microsoft and Skype share the vision of bringing software innovation and products to our customers,” said Tony Bates. “Together, we will be able to accelerate Skype’s plans to extend our global community and introduce new ways for everyone to communicate and collaborate,” Bates said.
“Tony Bates has a great track record as a leader and will strengthen the Microsoft management team. I’m looking forward to Skype’s talented global workforce bringing its insights, ideas and experience to Microsoft,” Ballmer said.
Speaking on behalf of the investor group that sold Skype to Microsoft, Egon Durban, managing director of Silver Lake, said: “We are thrilled with Skype’s transformation during the period of our ownership and grateful for the extraordinary commitment of its management team and employees. We are excited about Skype’s long-term future with Microsoft, as it is poised to become one of the world’s most dynamic and comprehensive communications platforms.”
Founded in 2003, Skype was acquired by eBay in September 2005, and then acquired by an investment group led by Silver Lake in November 2009. Skype has made impressive progress over the past 18 months under Silver Lake’s leadership, increasing monthly calling minutes by 150 percent, developing new revenue streams and strategic partnerships, acquiring the intellectual property powering its peer-to-peer network, and recruiting an outstanding senior management team.
Other members of the selling investor group led by Silver Lake include eBay International AG, CPP Investment Board, Joltid Limited in partnership with Europlay Capital Advisors; and Andreessen Horowitz.
The acquisition is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The parties hope to obtain all required regulatory clearances during the course of this calendar year.
About Skype Skype is communications software whose purpose is to break down barriers to communication. With an Internet-connected device, families, friends and colleagues can get together for free with messaging, voice and video. At low cost, they can also call landlines or mobiles virtually anywhere in the world. Skype has recently introduced group video, allowing groups of more than two people to do things together whenever they’re apart.
Founded in 2003 and based in Luxembourg. Skype can be downloaded onto computers, mobile phones and other connected devices for free.