How much have Elon Musk and big companies paid to buy social networks?

A few days ago we were surprised with the news that Elon Musk, the richest man in the world, bought the social network Twitter for US $ 44,000 million. The owner of Tesla and SpaceX is the new master of the little blue bird, the next step is to turn it into a private company and take it out of the stock market.

According to Forbes, Elon Musk’s net worth is $219 billion. What else can Elon Musk buy with $44 billion? For example, acquiring without any problem the best soccer teams such as Bayern Munich, Barcelona, ​​Liverpool, Real Madrid and PSG. Also, take over the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots.

But we are not here to talk about what you could buy, the real question is: What other social networks have been sold? Names appear that you have surely used or heard at some point, such as Slack, Skype, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, YouTube and the best friend of many, Instagram.

Purchase from Salesforce to Slack; the right moment
During the Covid-19 pandemic, in December 2020, one of the leaders in CRM, Salesforce, bought Slack Technologies for $27.7 billion, the most innovative business communication platform on the market.

According to the Salesforce statement, the terms of the deal concluded that Slack shareholders received $26.79 in cash and 0.0776 shares of Salesforce common stock for each share of Slack Technologies.

A smart purchase in the year that completely revolutionized our lifestyle and way of working. It is the union of two platforms for the present and future of teleworking.

Microsoft buys Skype; the boom of social networks
Did you know that in 2011, one in every 5 minutes of internet time was spent on social media? According to a study by Comscore, in that year social networks, the use of smartphones and tablets exploded. We could say that we entered the digital age.

Now yes, while rumors were feeding that Facebook and Google wanted to buy Skype, why didn’t they? The search engine already had Google Voice to make video calls and the social network founded by Mark Zuckerberg… simply because it is Facebook, because it only focuses on itself.

Remember the Windows Phone? It was also one of the main reasons for buying Skype. The Washington-based company wanted to compete head-to-head with the Android and iOS operating systems. Windows Phone didn’t have a native means of making video calls, unless you installed apps. Android had Google Voice and iOS with Facetime.

In the end, Microsoft won and made the purchase for 8.5 billion dollars, an amount that included Skype’s debt, close to 1 billion.

Said movement would not be the first for the video call platform; In 2005, Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, creators of Skype, sold 70% of the company to eBay for nearly $3 billion. Skype guaranteed $1.9 billion in cash and a check for $125 million.

Microsoft buys LinkedIn; shopping, shopping and more shopping
Let’s go back to 2016. The platform for professional use, LinkedIn, was bought by Microsoft for US26.6 billion, after the European Commission gave them the green light.

Let’s talk a bit about LinkedIn. In 2011, the company, founded in 2002 in Mountain View, California, debuted on Wall Street with a price of $45 per share. A year before its purchase, it closed with losses greater than 160 million and a turnover of 2.9 billion greenbacks.

Once the transaction was confirmed, giant Microsoft agreed to pay $196 per share. It seems that Microsoft does not hurt to take out the portfolio. Bill Gates’ company had been releasing greenbacks for a few years. In 2014 he bought Nokia for $7.4 billion and, as mentioned above, Skype for $8.5 billion.

Google buys YouTube; a bargain in the present
October 2006, Google pays 1,650 million dollars for YouTube, which for those years was an abysmal amount of money. Did you know that a year before they had purchase talks that were around 15 million? In November 2005, the video platform was barely 9 months old and with 65 employees.

Everything went too fast, the transaction was done in just 72 hours. Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, founders of YouTube, became employees of Google. In that transaction, Google became the second most visited page in the United States with 101 million visits, behind only Yahoo with 106 million and above MSN with 98 million.

Facebook buys Instagram… and WhatsApp
Shall we start with Instagram? Perfect. I will tell you the purchase amount and you tell me if it is a lot or a little: 1,000 million dollars in 2012. Sure, it would be rude if that amount were offered today. The payment was made one part in cash and the other in shares. April 9, 2022 marked the 10th anniversary of the acquisition.

Created in 2010, Instagram quickly became the favorite social network of many, precisely for the year of purchase, the company created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger already had more than 25 million active users and only 13 employees.

Did Facebook feel threatened by Twitter? That’s how it is. An article from CNBC determined that the purchase of Instagram was a strategy to protect itself from the social network of the little blue bird, since Twitter had offered 500 million dollars for Instagram, so Facebook had to overcome said offer. Currently, Instagram generates nothing more and nothing less than the modest amount of 20,000 million dollars to Facebook, now known as Meta.

Are we done with WhatsApp? In 2014, Mark Zuckerberg pulled out his wallet and paid $19 billion for WhatsApp. It was really 16,000 million, but the operation included a clause that would grant shares for more than 2,000 million to the employees and founders of the company for the next four years.

According to The New York Times, negotiations began in 2012 between Mark and Jan Koum, co-founder of WhatsApp. After several fruitless meetings in a cafe in Los Altos, California, it was on February 9 that Zuckerberg made the first offer.

Was there a threat this time? Sure, and it’s called Snapchat. When the multimedia platform began to be recognized, Facebook shielded itself with the purchase of WhatsApp. Its objective? Hold users’ attention and consolidate your position among smartphone users.

This is how we close this top of social networks and I want to ask you: With the $44 billion Elon Musk used to buy Twitter, which social network would you buy?


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