LinkedIn just bought online learning company Lynda for $1.5 billion

LinkedIn Jeff WeinerGetty Images/Mandel NganLinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner

LinkedIn just purchased, an online learning company, for $US1.5 billion, the company announced today.

Founded in 1995 by Lynda Weinman and her husband Bruce Heavin, lets users learn business, technology, software, and creative skills. Individuals can access Lynda on their own, but corporations and schools can purchase subscriptions too.

Weinman serves as the company’s executive chairman. Eric Robison has been’s CEO since 2007. Previously he worked at consulting firm IdeaTrek and Paul Allen’s Vulcan, Inc.

The deal, a cash-stock blend, is expected to close sometime this quarter.

Here’s the announcement on LinkedIn:

Many people don’t know that I started my first company when I was a freshman in college. I didn’t know the first thing about designing a website and relied on a Lynda Weinman web graphics book to get my site up and running. What I didn’t know at the time was that my experience would come full circle on both a professional and personal level today.

As the head of content products at LinkedIn, I spend a lot of time thinking about how the access to information and knowledge can be used to make professionals more productive and successful. The fact that I had to take a crash course to acquire a new professional skill is not unique to me — millions of professionals around the world are in a constant state of learning to achieve their professional goals every day.

So, I couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome the talented team to the LinkedIn family today. Together, I believe we can make it even easier for professionals around the world to accelerate their careers and realise their potential through the learning and development of new skills. Today’s announcement that LinkedIn intends to acquire allows us to take a meaningful step forward in building the Economic Graph, which you can read more about from our CEO Jeff Weiner’s post here. has an extensive library of premium video content, spanning hundreds of thousands of videos on a diverse set of professional topics across multiple languages. The service is used every day to help people accelerate their career.

We get so excited about the possibilities that could come from the integration of and LinkedIn. Imagine being a job seeker and being able to instantly know what skills are needed for the available jobs in a desired city, like Denver, and then to be prompted to take the relevant and accredited course to help you acquire this skill. Or doing a search on SlideShare to learn about integrated marketing and then to be prompted with a course on the same subject.

Both and LinkedIn are used by small and large organisations that place a high premium on talent — whether its acquiring it, training it, or retaining it.’s video content is used across academic institutions and companies alike to help train their employees and to educate students.

From’s mission, product and technology, to their user value proposition, the two companies couldn’t be a better fit. You can read more about’s vision from’s founder here.

What I’m most excited about are the passionate and talented employees that will be joining the content team that I lead. This is a team that really cares about content and about helping people change their lives. I look forward to working closely with this incredible team and for what’s to come. In the meantime, you can continue to use’s product as you always have to find the highest quality content and learn new skills.

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