Microsoft Buys Skype for $8.5 Billion

Microsoft-SkypeMicrosoft Corp. announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Internet communications company, Skype, for $8.5 billion in cash from the investor group led by Silver Lake.

According to Microsoft, Skype will be supporting 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.”

The acquisition will result into Skype being a new business division within Microsoft, and Skype CEO Tony Bates will assume the title of president of the new Microsoft Skype Division. He will be reporting directly to Steve 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.”