What was but rumour this morning has now become confirmed reality – eBay is selling Skype – well, some of it, anyway.
In a post on the Skype blog, the company’s President, Josh Silverman explains that:
A small group of venture capital funds have agreed with eBay to acquire a majority stake in Skype. The group is led by Silver Lake Partners, joined by Index and Andreessen Horowitz Ventures. You may recognize some names – for example Danny Rimer and Mike Volpi (both at Index Ventures) who were some of the earliest Board members and supporters of Skype.
The deal doesn’t mean that eBay is completely letting go of the Skype. it will still own 35%. The new investors are taking “approximately 65% of Skype”.
The deal is said to value Skype at $2.75 billion. That’s a lot more than many may expect – eBay spent around $3.1 billion on the company four years ago and it was widely believed to be overpriced at the time. The new valuation means it hasn’t lost a great deal of that pricetag (although when you’re dealing in billions of dollars, that’s still a lot of money).
Silverman is upbeat about the news writing:
It means we’re back to being a fully independent company again, but with a new group of owners who believe passionately in our mission and in the ability of our team to deliver on it. I can’t wait.