In what is being seen as one of the biggest deals in the world of social media, Microsoft and LinkedIn on Monday announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion, inclusive of LinkedIn’s net cash.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner shared that he would remain the CEO and would directly report to Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft. Although the deal is expected to close by the end of this year, it has generated a huge amount of excitement and anxiety amongst the employees and consumers alike.
The announcement of this acquisition like any other would have raised several concerns amongst the staff at both LinkedIn and Microsoft, to which the CEOs Jeff Weiner and Satya Nadella respectively, wrote to their employees, warding off their anxieties.
In an open mail to the entire workforce, Weiner stated, “Given our ability to operate independently, little is expected to change: You'll have the same title, the same manager, and the same role you currently have”. “We have the same mission and vision; we have the same culture and values; and I’m still the CEO of LinkedIn”, he added.
On the other hand, Nadella in his mail to his workforce stated, “A big part of this deal is accelerating LinkedIn's growth. To that end, LinkedIn will retain its distinct brand and independence, as well as their culture which is very much aligned with ours. Jeff will continue to be CEO of LinkedIn, he'll report to me and join our senior leadership team”.
At the same time, taking care of the employee concerns at Microsoft, regarding reporting and roles, Nadella said, “We know that near term there will be no changes in who reports to whom so no reporting relationships at Microsoft will change in that regard. This approach is designed to keep the LinkedIn team focused on driving results while simultaneously partnering on product integration plans with the Office 365 and Dynamics teams”.
Through his letter Weiner also told his staff that the two corporations are unique yet similar in terms of their mission and values, which was also one of the biggest drivers behind a unanimous agreement on this deal. While LinkedIn seeks to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful, Microsoft aims to empower every individual and organization in the world to achieve more. The two perspectives on which the two agree to have seamless alignment are – purpose and structure.
To further assure the people at LinkedIn about a brighter future ahead, through his mail, Weiner showed the staff a larger picture of the benefits of being associated with Microsoft. Being a part of one of the tech giants and operating at the same level which otherwise people dream of, enjoying a competitive edge and a strong financial backing were a few among the points shared by him.
For now, the coming together of these two very popular tech brands projects a positive picture of the future both for its businesses and its employees, however only time will tell what lies ahead and if this will progressively help the people behind it, succeed.