Technology

In Search of Growth, LinkedIn Acquires Newsle

LinkedIn_logo
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Investors are waiting to hear how LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE: LNKD) is going to grow, and that is very likely one of the motivators behind the company’s announced acquisition of privately held Newsle Inc. Monday morning. LinkedIn is certainly not desperate, but investors have worried about growth for nearly a year now.

From September of 2012 to September of 2013, shares of LinkedIn appreciated by about 250%, from around $100 a share to around $250 a share. Since then, shares have lost about 37% of their value and closed last Friday at just under $157.

LinkedIn did not disclose the terms of the deal under which the company will incorporate into its products Newsle software that lets users follow their online contacts and get nearly instant news when a contact’s name appears in a news story or blog post. A LinkedIn executive said on the company’s official blog:

[LinkedIn and Newsle] want to provide professional insights that make you better at what you do. For example, knowing more about the people in your network — like when they’re mentioned in the news — can surface relevant insights that help you hit your next meeting with them out of the park.

Will this software really help boost LinkedIn growth? Maybe. Will it move the needle much? Doesn’t seem particularly likely.

Investors like the deal, pushing LinkedIn’s shares up around 3% to $161.15 in mid-afternoon trading Monday. The stock’s 52-week range is $136.02 to $257.56. Volume was on track to be about equal to the daily average of around 2.6 million shares traded.

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