Microsoft buys code-sharing site Github for $7.5bn

MIcrosoft buy GitHub

Image Roland Moriz Flickr

Microsoft has announced it is to acquire the code-sharing site Github.

The deal is a big bet on Azure, the company's fast-growing cloud business, as it will be able to lure more code developers who use GitHub and drive more business to Microsoft.

Created in 2008, the GitHub repository hosting service broke the 100,000 users barrier around mid-2009, needing only one more year to cross 1 million repositories hosted.

In addition to being home to the overwhelming majority of open source projects, it's also used by developers within companies to privately collaborate on software. However, this potential partnership has since evolved into a possible acquisition, though the source claimed that GitHub's asking price "was more than Microsoft now wanted to pay".

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Nat Friedman, the Microsoft VP who will soon be the CEO of GitHub.

Microsoft will partly help GitHub expand to more developers in large organizations, a market the tech giant knows well.

Meanwhile, GitHub CEO and co-founder Chris Wanstrath will be a technical fellow at Microsoft. In taking on GitHub, which has yet to turn a profit, Microsoft is hoping to re-build trust with the developer community and expand the adoption of the Github platform with larger, legacy enterprises that already use Microsoft's software and services.

As Bloomberg reports, Microsoft is believed to have acquired GitHub.

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"Today, we released the integration of Visual Studio App Centre and Github, which provides Github developers building mobile apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and macOS devices to seamlessly automate DevOps processes right from within the Github experience", Microsoft said in a statement.

We both believe that software development needs to become easier, more accessible, more intelligent, and more open, so more people can become developers and existing developers can spend more time focusing on the unique problems they're trying to solve.

According to GitHub, as of March 2018 it has more than 27 million developers with 80 million repositories hosted.

Microsoft said it expects the deal to close by year-end. An incremental share buyback, beyond Microsoft's recent historical quarterly pace, is expected to offset stock consideration paid within six months after closing.

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