MS takes the Skype Call at $8.5 billion

Microsoft announced Tuesday its intention to acquire Skype, a company specializing in internet telephony services, for 8.5 billion dollars (5.9 billion euros).This acquisition is the largest in the history of global software giant, which is seeking new customers for its Windows and Office software. Skype, based in Luxembourg, is not profitable, but has 145 million users each month on average.The company, which planned last summer to go public to raise one billion dollars, since studied other possibilities.Two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters last week that Facebook and Google were planning their separate alliance with the group. An agreement would have valued Skype between 3 and 4 billion dollars, then found one source, considerably lower than that proposed by Microsoft to win the bet.This acquisition enables Microsoft to strengthen its presence in the lucrative market of video, popular with companies who see a way to reduce costs.
Skype access could thus be offered via the courier Outlook.
In the longer term, this transaction will enable Microsoft to expand its presence in the mobile market, while sales of personal computers run out of steam.Skype is doomed to become a new division of Microsoft, headed by its chief executive Tony Bates.But analysts are divided on the profitability of such an operation.”This is a strategic asset and a defensive operation,” said Colin Gillis, a financial analyst with BGC. “If they can put it on Windows 8, it will give them an advantage.”"It makes no sense in terms of financial investment. Skype does not generate enough revenue and profit (for the cost of acquisition) is compensated,” said Andrew Bartels on his side analyst Forrester.
Skype was founded in 2003 and acquired by eBay in 2005 for 3.1 billion dollars. The latter in 2009 sold a majority stake to a group of investors which include Silver Lake, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Andreessen Horowitz for about $ 1.9 billion.
Ebay has kept about one-third stake in Skype.


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