SlideShare and LinkedIn sitting in a tree…

About five years ago, we launched SlideShare. Since then people have uploaded millions of presentations to the site, sharing them with others, making SlideShare what it is today. I want to tell you about the next step in our journey. SlideShare has agreed to be acquired by LinkedIn, the largest professional network on the Internet.

We could not be happier about this. We think this is the right step for the SlideShare community, the site, and the team. When we started, the idea of sharing presentations on the Web was a twinkle in our eyes.  Jon dreamed up the idea while at a conference. We coded up the first version of the site over four months, and the site went live with simply a story on TechCrunch. The day we launched, we were completely unprepared for the volume of presentations that were immediately being uploaded from all over the world.

We mostly grew by word-of-mouth and virality. The only business deal I aggressively pursued was when I heard that there might be a LinkedIn developer platform in the works. I activated every connection through advisors, investors, and friends, determined that SlideShare be part of LinkedIn’s platform.

Since then, we have collaborated with LinkedIn on many more projects and have deepened our relationship, and it’s been clear how great the fit is. Today’s news is a natural culmination of this partnership.

So, what does this news mean for you – our dear users? I want to address the question that often comes up with acquisitions. People often worry whether the service they use is going to go away. If not today, then tomorrow. I want to assure you, that will not happen here. The SlideShare you have come to know and love will remain a place where you can continue to upload, share, and find presentations that help you grow professionally.

What does this mean for SlideShare the company? I will continue to run SlideShare and our team will continue to do what we’ve been doing, which is to develop new features and make the site even better. Over time you will see some integrations that take advantage of the great fit between SlideShare and LinkedIn.

You could ask why did we agree to sell? For one, I firmly believe that SlideShare will grow faster with LinkedIn. Second, I have watched as LinkedIn has grown from being a place to share your resume to a much richer site, where you go to keep up with what your professional network is doing and sharing. We like the path they are on, and are excited to join them on this journey.

Lastly, we felt a natural alignment between our two cultures as you’ll see in this fun presentation about our news today with LinkedIn:



I think this coming together means great things for professionals everywhere and certainly means there will be more to come.

- Rashmi

71 Responses to “SlideShare and LinkedIn sitting in a tree…”

  1. Gabe da Silveira

    Congratulations on the acquisition Rashmi! You might not remember me, but I met you on one of my first days in Silicon Valley when I was freshly hired by a new film startup called The Auteurs and I was attending the Facebook developers conference in San Jose back in 2007. I had no geographical clue and I was hitchhiking in the parking lot trying to get back to Palo Alto. You picked me up and dropped me off at the Caltrain station. I had no idea that a year later I would be living just up Castro street from there and 5 years into my own startup journey. Best of luck to you!

  2. Jay

    Awesome!

    Quick question: will the service will still be free?

  3. dave mcclure

    rashmi: you and slideshare are an inspiration to entrepreneurs everywhere… not to mention especially to women founders & Indian nationals.

    I’m so proud and happy for you… congrats :)

    best wishes for continued success at LinkedIn!

    DMC

  4. Slides That Rock

    Congratulations Rashmi and team. SlideShare has come a very long way, and you are moving on to the next chapter.

    Very exciting news and as big fans of SlideShare, we are very much looking forward to seeing SlideShare further grow and develop together with LinkedIn.

    Go Rock!

  5. Jenny Gove

    Congratulations Rashmi and Jon. Incredibly impressed and pleased for you!

  6. Aastha

    Hey congrats Rashmi….And all the best for the rest of the journey

  7. parul varma

    This is fantastic news!!! Congratulations to the entire team!

  8. David Crandall

    Awesome! So excited about your news today and how excited all of you must be. Can’t wait to see what the future holds and super excited for everyone!

    Congratulations!!!!

  9. senthil nayagam

    congrats slideshare team and Rashmi

    i visited slideshare office in 2008 and gave a talk on rails, and those pics are in your career page till now, good old memories

  10. amitabh laloriya

    Many Congratulations Rashmi ! Its indeed heartening to learn about your growth and success over the years !! Keep growing..!! Keep proving that U were destined to do meaningful things in life !! God bless U ! Regards , Amitabh Laloriya

  11. Manoj Ranaweera

    Well done Rashmi.

    The exit definitely makes sense, as we, http://www.edocr.com have watched you blossom in the Linkedin ecosystem, and our attempts to integrate with them has not come to any fruition.

    Would be interesting to watch the next phase of Slideshare growth under the Linkedin Group banner. Most acquisitions kill innovation – lets hope this will not happen with Slideshare.

    Once again well done!

    Best regards
    Manoj
    CEO – edocr.com

  12. Tarun Dua

    Hi Rashmi, Amit, Jon

    Congratulations, as one of the early users of slideshare it really feels good to see slideshare embarking on the next phase of growth with Linkedin.

    Regards
    -Tarun Dua

  13. Asho

    I can’t understand these business stuffs… facebook bought instagram (which don’t have any earning) for $1 billion… Linkedin bought slideshare (which is earning a lot and has good userbase) for $120 millions…

    Please explain me…

    Thank you

  14. Srinin

    Congratulations Rashmi, Amit and Jon!

    A well deserved development for all the hard work you guys had put in. I recall the occasions when my personal mails received your prompt attention and effective action. Perhaps Slideshare is the only snw where I had lingered longest, made the most number of friends – some of whom turned into deep personal friendships!

    I guess it is a great investment decision for Linkedin.

    The ‘fit’ with Linked-in should be great for both. I hope the members of slideshare who were there just for the entertainment, but turned out to be hard core loyalists with exception powerpoint skills, will still find a niche for themselves. These amateurs have a thing or two to teach to professional presenters with their unique perspective, innovation skills and most importantly the passion they bring to their presentations. I do hope Linked will leverage this group innovatively to mine the value they can bring to its platform.

    Wish Slideshare a splendid innings under the Linkedin umbrella!

  15. Ravindra tripathi

    CONGRATULATIONS . We are proud that a class fellow has reached such great heights in Business.

  16. Arjun Ghosh

    Hi Rashmi & Amit,
    First a hearty congrats. It so good to see a successful Indian product success on international scale. Helps to inspire all us others.
    I have been following you his from theft one you launched! In fact Amit might not remember, but I was nearly planning to join Slideshare in rails tech in Delhi about 4years back :)

    Again a hearty congratulation :)

    Regards,
    Arjun

  17. Michael Freeman

    Congratulations on what looks like what will be a good, synergistic fit between the two companies. Slideshare provides such a great platform for business, nonprofit and other communicators to get their presentation ideas in front of MANY eyeballs and the latter should only increase with further integration into LinkedIn’s user-interfaces!

    However, I do sincerely hope that LinkedIn will continue to allow SlideShare to keeps its own branding/messaging identity and operational independence on a going-forward basis, because SlideShare still provides it own UNIQUE online platform and showcase for entrepreneurs and progressive-minded social advocates/engineers!

    Here’s a toast to what can be a STRONG, last marriage of the two companies!

  18. Sandeep Saxena

    Congratulations Rashmi! You are a great example for other women to follow. Keep up the good work.

  19. Michael Freeman

    Whoops, I meant to say I hope this will be a “strong, LASTING marriage between the two companies” — my bad! ;-D

  20. BrandMover

    Congratulations for the great move! For me it was always kind of natural to use, sync and merge both LinkedIn and SlideShare apps in the last 4 years. Success and keep the great service rolling.

  21. Larry T

    While LinkedIn offers the professional credibility — I am concerned that the prior relationship between SlideShare and Facebook will cause LinkedIn professions and their information shared into Facebook. Congrats to the 700 million facebook users, but at a professional level there is no interest in joining that network.

    Since LinkedIn is the new ‘parent’ of SlideShare, I hope the first sitdown addresses keeping separation and requiring an opt-in feature before there is any risk.

    Since X Windows technical conferences at MIT in 1987, slide sharing has been active and alive and well. I — unrelated to this announcement — saw my first SlideShare presentation via a OWASP presentation on mobile cyber defense issues and it was very responsive. Until I wanted to download a copy so I could send the authors updates and input as they requested. No dice. I didn’t have a Facebook account.

    There lies the dilemma.

    Good luck with your growth as a company — and a job well done.

  22. Barry White

    Congratulations. We’re just getting around to using Slide Share for our clients, so this will be an interesting venture. Looks like we’ll have to get savvy with LinkedIn too.

  23. Guilmour Rossi

    Uso e adoro o SlideShare, agora com a quisição do LinkedIn, tenho certeza que o serviço vai melhorar ainda mais. Parebens a equipe e a todos;

    Hugs from Brazilian users!

  24. Bill Samuel

    I am very disturbed about this because of the lack of ethics of the LinkedIn owners. The site is notorious for sending out emails supposedly from its members to people the members know without the member’s permission. Because it is an unethical site, I have refused to join LinkedIn. I hope its lack of ethical sensitivity doesn’t creep into SlideShare.

  25. eric Lin

    Congratulations Rashmi! and with my best wishes for all the SlideShare team.

  26. Prabhaker Verma

    It is great Rashmi. Your labor and insight paid off well. Good luck for future endevor.

    Prabhaker

  27. Amanda Brown

    As an avid user and recommender of slideshare to all the people I train on LinkedIn, well done. I will continue to be a pro subscriber

  28. Coach Paul

    I always like to see people success, reap the rewards of their efforts and smarts and move on the next new thing for them. Great story. Congrats to both SlideShare and LinkedIn. I use ‘em both to great advantage!

  29. Fax Authority

    Congrats on being acquired! I think it will be good for both you and linkedin – both deliver a good product to the business market.