LinkedIn Signaling Aggressive Growth Strategy With Pulse Acquisition

on April 12 2013 8:34 AM
LinkedIn

To be fair, the blog post by LinkedIn (NYSE: LNKD [FREE Stock Trend Analysis]) Senior Vice President Deep Nishar on Thursday wasn’t meant to be a press release.

It was meant to be a first person account of the background behind the company’s acquisition of popular newsreader, Pulse and the unique connection the entities had, even before the acquisition.

“I first met Ankit Gupta, one of Pulse’s founders, at a technology innovation competition in India many years ago.” It sounds more like the beginning of one of those “My Most Unforgettable Character” essays from Reader’s Digest than a corporate press release.

In the post, Nishar discussed how he met Ankit Gupta, one of Pulse’s future founders, at a technology innovation competition in India several years ago, how Ankit went on to win the competition, and how the two men discussed Ankit’s future career path, among other things.

Nishar recalled Ankit a few years later when reading about he and his partner Akshay Kothari and their app that provided a “fresh, new way to consume news on mobile.” The result – a $90 million deal to bring Pulse into the LinkedIn family. LinkedIn, of course, didn’t buy Pulse simply because an executive remembered a bright young man from a competition in India.

LinkedIn has a vision, also revealed by Nishar, of turning LinkedIn into “the definitive professional publishing platform — where all professionals come to consume content and where publishers come to share their content.”

The Next Web speculated about whether that vision included Pulse as a standalone product or not.

Quoting a portion of a LinkedIn press release, “The existing Pulse apps will continue to be supported as the integrated Pulse and LinkedIn teams work to build future generations of professional content consumption products,” The Next Web concluded that while Pulse’s technology will remain, Pulse would likely not remain in its current form forever.

Meanwhile, with the ink barely dry on the recent acquisition, LinkedIn continues to move forward with its vision, following a Forbes report about the company’s next big idea: customized alerts that tip off recruiters to “People You May Want to Hire.”

According to the report, these alerts involve advanced computer algorithms with built-in learning capability — effectively making them digital cue cards for recruiters. The acquisition of the Pulse newsreader and addition of the new recruiting tool are clear signs LinkedIn is serious when it says it wants to be the place “where all professionals come to consume content.”

At the time of this writing, Jim Probasco had no position in any of the mentioned equities.

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