Who owns LinkedIn? Top LinkedIn Shareholders Revealed!

October 21, 2022
Who owns Linkedin 2

Today we are going to take you through the story of the world’s largest business employment and networking site: Linkedin. 

Here’s what we will cover in this article:

  • Who owns LinkedIn?
  • Who are the Linkedin Shareholders?
  • How and why was Linkedin sold to Microsoft?

Let’s find out!

Who Owns LinkedIn? 

Let’s talk about the story and how it all began. 

It all started way back in 2003 when a guy named Reid Hoffman launched the Linkedin platform, becoming one of the first sites of its kind. 

At first, he did not want publicity because he knew it would take some adjustments and feedback to get the site working smoothly.

Who owns LinkedIn? Top LinkedIn Shareholders Revealed.

Still, some journalists and vloggers did write about the new site, but the reviews were largely negative. The criticisms revolved around the site separating the personal from the professional. Many thought it was dull, not very social, and had too many privacy settings.

Since its inception, LinkedIn has grown to include more services and revenue-generating methods. In the beginning, all of the services on LinkedIn were free. Like many tech startups, profitability was not among the immediate goals and Hoffman paid for all expenses himself in the initial stages.

Now Linkedin offers Premium Career packages at $29.99/month, Premium Business at $59.99/month, Sales Navigator Pro at $79.99/month, and Recruiter Lite for Hiring at $119.95/month.

Linkedin counts more than half a billion business people, many of whom are willing to pay a premium subscription to have their resumes online or to read interesting business articles. To be in touch with people that might be accessible for their next job.

So there’s a very good reason to be on Linkedin, and it’s not the number of likes you get on Facebook, the number of followers you get on Twitter, or the number of thumbs up on YouTube. This is all about your resume online, reading interesting articles, and seeing people talk about their business life.

Along with that, Linkedin offers certifications and online courses and improves job-readiness skills. Some are provided for free, especially the introductory ones, after which one will be required to pay for higher-level certifications. 

LinkedIn also makes money by selling access to information on their members to sales professionals and recruiters. This is the company’s main source of revenue generation.

LinkedIn’s Largest Shareholders

As we mentioned also before, the biggest Linkedin shareholders are Reid Hoffman, the business’s founder and chairman, and Michelle Yee, his wife, hold 21.4% of the company. 

More LinkedIn shareholders include Jeff Weiner, the executive chairman of Linkedin. Weiner still continues to help LinkedIn realize its vision of creating economic opportunity for every global workforce member by mentoring, coaching, and advising current leadership.

Sordello Steven, the CFO of LinkedIn Corporation. Steve continues to play a key leadership role in LinkedIn’s merger with Microsoft, scaled the company from $10 million to over $10 billion in revenue, raised crucial capital, and completed multiple private and public acquisitions.

Deep Nishar, a Product strategist, investor, entrepreneur, and also the Vice President of Product at Linkedin since December 2008.

Reid Hoffman and Michelle Yee

Hoffman built and nurtured startups for two decades, earning his credentials. He launched, the first social networking website, which he left in 2000 and began working full-time at PayPal as a COO.

Worth mentioning that Reid Hoffman was on PayPal’s founding board and helped start Linkedin when most executives thought publishing your little black book would be a terrible idea.

Also, his background counts many important positions such as junior product manager at Apple and Fujitsu. An executive at PayPal, an institutional investor, and an angel investor. Also a board member of public and private companies and finally the founder and chief executive officer of LinkedIn.

Microsoft Acquires LinkedIn in 2016

At the end of 2015 and early 2016, Linkedin announced spectacularly bad results compared to what people were asking and expecting. Linkedin dropped 43 percent or 10 billion dollars in one day, and that’s a HUGE drop.

During the time that they were public, the guidance and having to catch up was out of sync with each other, plus they had some business issues they were working on.

And, well, that was the signal time from Microsoft.

Microsoft announced plans to pay more than $26 billion for LinkedIn. And that’s what they did! The acquisition would be completed on December 8, 2016.

Today, Microsoft revealed that LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman had joined its board.

Why LinkedIn Sold to Microsoft

LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner mentions Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s leadership as a driving factor. He also added that Microsoft is a more agile, innovative, open and purpose-driven company.

Weiner shared some ideas for how LinkedIn’s services could be integrated into Microsoft’s products. He mentioned, weaving LinkedIn’s graph into Outlook, Calendar, Office, Windows, and other Microsoft apps.

The LinkedIn CEO, also said the company would remain a fully independent entity within Microsoft.

Why LinkedIn Sold to Microsoft

Key Takeaways 

I hope you enjoyed the story of the world’s largest business employment and networking site and learned interesting facts.

Here’s the final breakdown of who owns Linkedin:

  • Linkedin was formed in 2002 and launched in 2003, co-established by Reid Hoffman and two of his colleagues.
  • In early 2016, Linkedin announced a huge drop in its revenue.
  • Microsoft then announced plans to buy Linkedin and pay more than $26 billion.

Did you know all of these Linkedin facts? Which one did surprise you the most? 

Let us know in the comments below.

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