LONDON, Sept. 12 -- Online auction provider eBay Inc. has agreed to acquire Luxembourg-based Skype Technologies SA, a global Internet communications company, for approximately $2.6 billion in cash and eBay stock, plus potential performance-based consideration. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of the year.
Three-year-old Internet voice communications provider Skype has 54 million members in 225 countries and territories and adds approximately 150,000 users a day, according to the company. Under the sale agreement, Skype founders Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis, currently CEO and senior vice president of strategy, respectively, will remain in their current positions, with Zennstrom reporting to eBay CEO Meg Whitman and joining eBay's senior executive team.
The companies say the acquisition will allow Skype to improve communication between the millions of eBay buyers and sellers, leading to increased activity on eBay in areas that require direct contact between them, such as used cars, business and industrial equipment and high-end collectibles. The companies say it will also allow eBay and Skype to pursue new lines of business, such as pay-per-call communication.
For more information, visit: www.skype.com