technology

If Microsoft Finds Another LinkedIn Deal, Chairman Is ‘All In’

Microsoft Chairman John Thompson discusses the company’s push to the cloud and acquisition strategy.

Microsoft Corp. Chairman John Thompson is so pleased with what he called the “wildly successful” acquisition of LinkedIn that he’d happily back another deal like it.

If Microsoft can find a similar deal, Thompson is “all in,” he said in an interview with Bloomberg Television from the Milken Global conference. Microsoft acquired LinkedIn in 2016 in an all-cash purchase valued at $26.2 billion.

As for where he’d like to invest, Thompson is interested in companies that could help connect Microsoft’s cloud software to more users, particularly in industries that have been slower to move to the cloud, he said. Thompson on Monday also joined venture capital firm Lightspeed.

John Thompson

Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg

Thompson expressed distaste for companies whose ad-financed businesses share or sell user data, while declining to comment on Facebook Inc. specifically.

“Many of them make money off ads and they have used that as kind of a leverage point,” he said of user data. “At Microsoft, we don’t believe in that.”

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