Today’s announcement of the $8.5 Billion dollar cash purchase of Skype by Microsoft will have the world buzzing with chatter and speculation for weeks to come. Here are my outtakes from today’s announcement.
- Skype founders Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis were (are) team builders; the company succeeded against the giant telecom odds by collaboration and strong leaders that really bonded
- Skype has formed perhaps the largest active peer to peer network in the world; with access to now over 50 million TV’s and other devices Microsoft will soon be expected to add Skype to Xbox, Kinect and perhaps reawaken the seemingly dead Microsoft Mobile platform
- New revenues from advertizing something that has always held back Microsoft in achieving a strong financial model like Google to “Give Away” things in order to generate revenue.
- Skype has become a “Verb” and Microsoft will leverage this across their applications; I see it becoming part of Outlook and SharePoint sooner rather than later.
- Skype will give Microsoft access to “Non-Microsoft” platforms expanding the company’s brand and reach. This will impact the availability of BING, and Maps along with reawaking the company’s earlier quest to become a communications provider.
Aside from just watching the course Microsoft takes Skype we should also watch the many spin offs from former Skypers after the 2007 exodus of many executives. Here is a short list of some former Skype executives and where they are today:
rdio - online music to every platform you can think of led by Janus Friis - Skype co-founder and Carter Adamson former head of product development
TransferWise - a currency exchange service founded by Taavet Hinrikus former director of strategy
MemoLane - a document collaboration system founded by Eric Lagier Skype's former head if mobile business development, also notable that Skype's co-founder and CEO Niklas Zennstrom is an investor.
Hi-Media Group - an online media publishing group CEO is now Pooj Preena Skype's former business development lead.
I'm sure this is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to innovative team oriented folks; however you can see that building a vision produces a far more rich environment for innovation that we see from former HP or IBM folks. That's another blog...