LinkedIn recently acquired SlideShare for US$119 million. With this deal the world’s largest professional network on the internet, LinkedIn, came together with a leading professional content sharing community, SlideShare. LinkedIn’s mission is to connect the world’s professionals to enable them to be more productive and successful. Did this deal help LinkedIn in this respect?NUMBERS FIRST – Lets look at the membership numbers first. LinkedIn has about +161 Million members, 107 Unique Monthly visitors, and 2+ sign-ups every second. SlideShare had 29 Million unique monthly visitors and 9 Content uploads. Both website boasted very healthy numbers in terms of membership and activity and were growing fast in terms of membership.
OVERALL – I think SlideShare is a great acquisition for LinkedIn and I see greater integration of SlideShare into LinkedIn. With the growth in big data, professionals need to be make sense of all the info and the presentations on SlideShare are perfect for this. I see good fit between the two companies. LinkedIn continues to grow at a terrific pace and there should be a steady stream of new users for SlideShare.
THE MOVE – It is great to see LinkedIn moving aggressively with regards to Big data, Cloud tools and Visual space. LinkedIn is providing more efficient and effective ways of sharing and managing data and information in the cloud. The issues of Data, Cloud and Visual are very topical at the moment. Companies like IBM have made huge investments over the years in their Data Analytics businesses.
GREATER INTEGRATION – I see much greater integration between LinkedIn and SlideShare going forward. Currently Slideshare is just an App on LinkedIn but I also see it becoming a key part of the LinkedIn experience at some stage. I can imagine that the two platforms were already talking to each other quite closely. That would mean it moving from the Apps to being an integral and key part of the site, built into it. A commitment was made following the announcement of the deal that the SlideShare we love will stay the same while ways were explored to make it even better. I see Slideshare continue have its own website as is currently the case.
INTEGRATION ACROSS THE WEB – LinkedIn’s continued influence across the web through the usage of APIs and LinkedIn Logins seems to tie in nicely with SlideShare’s own rapid adoption and embedding across the web. Now both will most likely have a common platform with even greater benefits for users and can cross-sell to each other’s users.
BIG DATA – With the explosive growth in the big data industry, professionals need to be make sense of all the info and the presentations on SlideShare are perfect for this. Visual presentation of information makes it easier and quicker to understand. Makes it a compelling case of less is more which leads to faster decision-making. There is information overload nowadays in our personal and professional lives and a tool like SlideShare helps us to make sense of it all. Less is more with tools like SlideShare where lots of information can be presently visually and readily understood.
GOOD FIT – I see good fit between the two companies in terms of strategy and products. LinkedIn continues to grow at a terrific pace and there should be a steady stream of new users for SlideShare. It is comforting that LinkedIn has a very solid and proven business model and chose to acquire a company that also looks very promising in terms of growth and prospects.