Microsoft is said to be buying the professional networking website LinkedIn for just over $26bn (£18bn) in cash.
The deal is said to boost sales of its business and email software.Microsoft said that LinkedIn would retain its “distinct brand, culture and independence”.
Head of research at CCS Insight, Ben Wood, said the deal would give Microsoft access to the world’s biggest professional social network with more than 430 million members worldwide.
Mr Wood said: "That's a valuable asset that can be deeply integrated with a number of Microsoft assets such as Office 365, Exchange and Outlook. That said, Microsoft has stated that the company will continue to operate as an independent business, so we'll have to see how deeply the integration occurs.”
Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said the deal was to “key to our bold ambition to reinvent productivity and business processes”.LinkedIn shares soared 47% following the announcement of the deal.
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