As the company announced this Tuesday, Skype (which is currently owned by a group led by Silver Lake, the private equity firm) will become a new business unit within Microsoft and will be run by Tony Bates, the company’s current chief executive.
Microsoft said it plans to incorporate Skype’s real-time video and voice communications into its existing product lines, including Office, Windows Phone and the Xbox gaming system.
Skype was actually first purchased by Ebay back in 2005 for $2.6 Billion, but things did not work out for Ebay and they ended up selling Skype to a group of investors for $1.9 Billion in 2009. The Skype deal would rank as the biggest acquisition in the 36-year history of Microsoft.
The Internet is already abuzz with varied reactions to the Skype buyout. The most popular joke arising so far notes that, after the deal is concluded, Microsoft and Skype will create the legendary SkyNet, the evil global system from The Terminator movies.