Microsoft tried to acquire Facebook for $15 billion

A lot of people thought Mark Zuckerberg was crazy when he turned down Yahoo's $1 billion offer, but it now turns out that he also declined a $15 billion offer from Microsoft in 2007. This information was revealed at a press conference entitled “How to get acquired” at the Le Web conference in Paris.

The Telegraph reports that Microsoft’s Senior Director of Strategy and Acquisitions, Fritz Lanman, confirmed that Microsoft did try to buy Facebook in 2007. It was believed by Microsoft that Facebook and Microsoft were similar, and because of this Steve Ballmer approached Zuckerberg and offered $15 billion; Microsoft did not state why they felt the two companies were similar. Zuckerberg reportedly replied to Ballmer by saying "Why don’t we just buy you for $15 billion?”

After the rejection, Microsoft made an investment of $240 million into Facebook, which resulted in the search partnership that we see today. Why Zuckerberg didn't accept the offer is quite obvious, as Facebook today is far more powerful than it was in 2007. With Myspace all but out of the picture, Facebook is the dominate social media platform and nothing comes close to competing with it.

What the future holds for Facebook is unknown as the site contains so much personal information, its literally a treasure chest full of information to marketers. But, as the technology world goes, its not about the products that currently exists that will challenge Facebook, its the new startup that no one has heard of yet that may eventually lead to Facebook's demise.   

Image Credit: Digital-Lifestyle.info

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If Microsoft had acquired Facebook we would have grouping feature in Facebook by now, just like MS does in Active Directory, allowing us, instead of just having 'Friends', to add them to different groups such as "Family, Acquaintances, Friends, co-workers, etc" with different privacy settings such as "only family sees family photos", and other things that Facebook should have implemented ages ago.

Charles Keledjian said,
If Microsoft had acquired Facebook we would have grouping feature in Facebook by now, just like MS does in Active Directory, allowing us, instead of just having 'Friends', to add them to different groups such as "Family, Acquaintances, Friends, co-workers, etc" with different privacy settings such as "only family sees family photos", and other things that Facebook should have implemented ages ago.
...that's been available for ages now. It's called lists.

I think Facebook is great for a lot of things, and I think it'd be best if it was left to be an independent company and site. I don't think I would want Google, Microsoft, and especially not media companies (think MySpace) taking over Facebook, and potentially leveraging their own things over the users.

It'd just be nice if Microsoft could revamp their own social networking platform offering more flexibility and control than Facebook, but not too extreme and crappy that it becomes a MySpace.

$15bn , Deal or no Deal. I would have to say deal, the position facebook is in now (at the top) can only get worse, it cannot get any higher than the top.
Sell it to MS and be glad you did Mark in years to come when the next big thing has rendered it worthless (friendster.com 2.0)

Unbelievable!!

Didn't think there were that many FB haters on here? I thought EVERYONE here loved FB!
No sarcasm there either. I'm being dead serious.

Personally,
I think those social networking sites should flat out be against the law!

cork1958 said,
Unbelievable!!
I think those social networking sites should flat out be against the law!

And everyone who has used one should have a number tattooed on their arm, right ?

Lazlo said,
"Why don't we just buy you for $15 billion?”

HAHA. HAHA. No seriously. HAHA.

I thought that was hilarious! Knock Microsoft off their high horse for a few minutes. LOL!

Mike Allen said,

I thought that was hilarious! Knock Microsoft off their high horse for a few minutes. LOL!


How so? Back in 2007 Facebook wasn't as popular as it is today. More people still used Myspace, and thats saying a lot.

$15 billion for the company back then? That's a pretty dam good deal. Whereas Microsoft was worth $200-300 billion. Big big difference there.

Anyone else think that you would have to be stupid to pay that much for a social network site these things come in and out of fashion in a few years people will get bored and have moved on to the next big thing.

Because of social networks like Facebook people seem to care more about their virtual identity than their real one. Or as Jaron Lanier says: "The abstract person obscures the real person".

Andre said,
Because of social networks like Facebook people seem to care more about their virtual identity than their real one. Or as Jaron Lanier says: "The abstract person obscures the real person".

Sometimes the real person is pretty ugly, and wearing masks make us beautiful. Thanks for your post, i like that quote.

Anyone else think that you would have to be stupid to pay that much for a social network site these things come in and out of fashion in a few years people will get bored and have moved on to the next big thing.

mattacular said,
Anyone else think that you would have to be stupid to pay that much for a social network site these things come in and out of fashion in a few years people will get bored and have moved on to the next big thing.

Yes, Mr. Ballmer is getting old and stupid by jumping on the bandwagon of believers that this 26 yo really has that much power with Facebook. Google is much, much more powerful. By the time Facebook starts to make money, people will leave it.

Luis Mazza said,

By the time Facebook starts to make money, people will leave it.

Facebook makes plenty of money. If you were talking about Twitter, you would be correct.

rfirth said,

Facebook makes plenty of money. If you were talking about Twitter, you would be correct.

I actually meant REAL money, because revenues of 1 to 2 billions a year is not even close to Google's 25 Billions and MS' 60 Billions. And will never be.

Facebook is a bubble, as Orkut and MySpace once were. This is going to be a place for poor silly people when it is not "fashionable" anymore.
Facebook holds nothing more than pure psychology can teach us.

Steve Ballmer approached Zuckerberg and offered $15 billion; Microsoft did not state why they felt the two companies were similar. Zuckerberg reportedly replied to Ballmer by saying "Why don't we just buy you for $15 billion?”

Wow. I would have laughed at the moron and walked off.

ZAnwar said,

Wow. I would have laughed at the moron and walked off.


i would've taken the 15billion and make my own country and make my own facebookless internet

hotdog963al said,
Good. These guys do so much for the open source webdev community, it would be a shame to have Microsoft cripple that.
But they do so bad for privacy and having all our data to hand...

Singh400 said,
But they do so bad for privacy and having all our data to hand...
They only have what YOU give them. Users should be more careful about their own personal privacy online.
Forget Facebook, you shouldn't be posting any sensitive information on the internet full stop.

hotdog963al said,
Good. These guys do so much for the open source webdev community, it would be a shame to have Microsoft cripple that.

and microsoft does not? even MS contributes to the open source community.... MS just barely makes its own work open source... but neither does google

Personally. I think FB is overrated. Can't argue with figures in the billions though. Life's weird - Facebook making billions and Wikipedia pleading for donations. Heh.

Breach said,
Personally. I think FB is overrated. Can't argue with figures in the billions though. Life's weird - Facebook making billions and Wikipedia pleading for donations. Heh.

microsoft should bail out wikipedia and make it theirs, would be a good addition to their live services.

Are you sure it was 15 billion and not 1.5 billion? ,seems to me with that kind of money M$ would just create an entirely new Social Networking site, that would eventually overtake Facebook.
or is $15billion not enough nowadays, maybe Facebook is waiting for Google to double the offer for $30 billion, I think it will be Google that eventually will throw both M$ and Facebook into the Hurt Locker.

C_Guy said,
Please check spelling before posting. Microsoft is not difficult to spell correctly. For most of us anyway.

Microsoft is spelled a bunch of different ways.

Microsoft
M$
Microwave <----- According to my customers anyway

warwagon said,

Microsoft is spelled a bunch of different ways.

Microsoft
M$
Microwave <----- According to my customers anyway

Wrong... Microsoft is spelled as Microsoft . Any other spelling just makes you look like an idiot...

warwagon said,

Microsoft is spelled a bunch of different ways.

Microsoft
M$
Microwave <----- According to my customers anyway

Microsoft Corporation
MSFT

Do you see a $ or "dollar" in there anywhere? No.
You fail and so do your customers.

I'm not sure were your from but all over the net its spelt and understood multi ways

M$ is the most commen when it comes to fourms
Microsoft.
MSFT
Microwave (is new to me)

and were Im from we have another tearm

MicroShaft.

xpablo said,
Are you sure it was 15 billion and not 1.5 billion? ,seems to me with that kind of money M$ would just create an entirely new Social Networking site, that would eventually overtake Facebook.
or is $15billion not enough nowadays, maybe Facebook is waiting for Google to double the offer for $30 billion, I think it will be Google that eventually will throw both M$ and Facebook into the Hurt Locker.

they already have their own social network it is called Live.com

The people posting **** Facebook still think IRC is the best social networking out there. What other technological platform (website, software, technology, whaever) on the planet can your entire family interact with one another, while also interacting with every one of their friends? Gimme a break. Face it. They dominate and that's why grandma and grandpa are on Facebook.

jafoman said,
The people posting **** Facebook still think IRC is the best social networking out there. What other technological platform (website, software, technology, whaever) on the planet can your entire family interact with one another, while also interacting with every one of their friends? Gimme a break. Face it. They dominate and that's why grandma and grandpa are on Facebook.

Leaving your computers for a few seconds and actually meeting up with them...face that >_>

jafoman said,
The people posting **** Facebook still think IRC is the best social networking out there. What other technological platform (website, software, technology, whaever) on the planet can your entire family interact with one another, while also interacting with every one of their friends? Gimme a break. Face it. They dominate and that's why grandma and grandpa are on Facebook.

That's all well and good, but they aggressively take advantage of your grandma and grandpa to make money off of them and auction off their personal info. Facebook is great for me, I don't feed it and I use it responsibly, but most of the world is clueless.

DDStriker said,

Leaving your computers for a few seconds and actually meeting up with them...face that >_>

Apart from the obsessive ones most of us do. I use Facebook to share photos, organise events and sometimes chat to people via the chat. It's no substitute for face to face however being at University makes it a tad difficult most of the time.

DDStriker said,

Leaving your computers for a few seconds and actually meeting up with them...face that >_>

When your family is spread out all over the country and your friends move away... What then?

DDStriker said,

Leaving your computers for a few seconds and actually meeting up with them...face that >_>


kinda hard when they are in another STATE . this is why i like facebook most of my family live in another state or states . facebook makes it easy to stay in contact with them all in 1 place easy way to share pics etc etc .

jafoman said,
The people posting **** Facebook still think IRC is the best social networking out there. What other technological platform (website, software, technology, whaever) on the planet can your entire family interact with one another, while also interacting with every one of their friends? Gimme a break. Face it. They dominate and that's why grandma and grandpa are on Facebook.

IRC just is the best way for online communication IMO, facebook should be used for REAL LIFE friends only, or does anyone here finds the urge to share their personal info with every dude they meet online?
i mean, just an email address is enough to find you on facebook ~.~

DDStriker said,

Leaving your computers for a few seconds and actually meeting up with them...face that >_>

I have a VERY active social life. I see my friends almost every day of the week. Yet I still take interest in their thoughts, likes, dislikes etc, and form discussions and join discussions with them and other friends, who I maybe knew a little but not enough. You can't get ALL your facebook friends into one room, but you can perhaps learn a lot about them via the discussions that they can ALL potentially get involved in This my man, is a brilliant thing, and should be praised, not scoffed at. You want to see them instead of facebooking them? Good for you. I do both

To enable the latest chat features of Microsoft's Facebook please install the latest version of our operating system as advanced features such as.. erm fade? are unsupported by previous versions.

I am all for sharing the information but its getting abit to easy to get information and its shared with way way to many people .. its like facebook is becoming the fbi what next it watches you sleep at night

kukubau said,
facebook=**** hole
Actually it depends on the people you add. If your friends are ****, then yes... Facebook would indeed be quite a **** hole for you!

hotdog963al said,
Actually it depends on the people you add. If your friends are ****, then yes... Facebook would indeed be quite a **** hole for you!

This is so true, its unreal!

hotdog963al said,
Actually it depends on the people you add. If your friends are ****, then yes... Facebook would indeed be quite a **** hole for you!


+1

hotdog963al said,
Actually it depends on the people you add. If your friends are ****, then yes... Facebook would indeed be quite a **** hole for you!
People seem to forget this.