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LinkedIn is to acquire Lynda.com for about $1.5bn

  • Author:Angelia
  • Source:www.diecastingpartsupplier.com
  • Release on:2015-04-13
LinkedIn is to acquire the online learning business Lynda.com for about $1.5bn, as the social network expands offerings for its audience of professional users.
Lynda.com, a California-based company, has created hundreds of thousands of video tutorials in multiple languages, helping people to learn “software, technology, creative and business skills to achieve personal and professional goals”. Users pay a subscription of up to $375 a year to gain access to online courses that have been created by more than 1,000 authors.
Jeff Weiner, chief executive of LinkedIn, said the companies “are highly aligned?.?.?.?both companies seek to help professionals be better at what they do”.
He said the companies “believe strongly that the growing skills gap is one of the biggest challenges to the future of the global economy”.
Lynda’s courses will be integrated with the LinkedIn site. For example, a jobseeker might be able to use the site to discover what skills are needed for the open vacancies in his or her city, and be prompted to take a relevant course.
Though Lynda.com was founded in 1995 as a small school in Pasadena, California, and later a learn-by-video business, the company secured the vast majority of its nearly $290m of investment in the past two years.
Existing investors include Silicon Valley venture capital groups Accel Partners and Meritech Capital Partners, as well as US private equity groups TPG and Spectrum Equity.
Lynda Weiman, co-founder and executive chair of Lynda.com, said all of LinkedIn’s 350m members could potentially benefit from the “self-paced study of new skills” that her business offers.
“The skills gap is one of the leading social issues of our time — technology changes fast and people need to keep their skills up to date,” she said in a blogpost.
“We have a shared vision of connecting relevant knowledge to those in need of new or stronger skills.”
Lynda.com’s revenue last year was about $150m, with two-thirds coming from individual subscriptions and one-third from enterprise customers. The company’s compound annual growth rate has been about 40 per cent since 2001 and it has more than 500 employees worldwide.
More than 5m licences have been sold to enterprise and professional users with customers including more than half of the Fortune 50, all of the US military and all of the Ivy League colleges.
LinkedIn will pay through a combination of about 52 per cent cash and 48 per cent stock. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter.
The $1.5bn acquisition is LinkedIn’s largest. Its second-largest deal was the $175m acquisition of Bizo, a business to business marketing platform last year, and $120m for job-matching site Bright in February 2014.

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