Microsoft reportedly reaches deal to acquire GitHub (Updated)

Microsoft logo at Ignite
Microsoft logo at Ignite (Image credit: Windows Central)

Updated June 4, 2018: Bloomberg now reports that Microsoft has reached a deal to acquire GitHub. The deal, the report says, may be formally announced this week. Details of the reported acquisition, including its cost, aren't yet available. The original story follows.

Microsoft has reportedly held talks about a potential acquisition of GitHub, reports Business Insider. According to the report, Microsoft and GitHub have entertained an acquisition in recent years, but the talks have recently turned more serious.

It's unclear if the talks are still going on, but CNBC confirmed the discussions with a source, noting that the idea of an acquisition initially grew out of talks about a $35 million marketing partnership.

GitHub has operated independently since its launch and was last valued at $2 billion. An acquisition could potentially cost Microsoft more than $5 billion, CNBC reports. GitHub is currently without a CEO, following last year's departure of Chris Wanstrath, who was GitHub's founder and previously held the position.

GitHub operates as an open-source service for developers, acting as a hosting service for version control and source code management. Microsoft, which has been more open to embracing the open-source community in recent years. Most recently, that effort resulted in the release of the original file manager as an open-source project on GitHub. The two have also partnered, with Microsoft releasing its App Center App{.nofollow} in the GitHub Marketplace.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl

  • Awful news. I like GitHub the way it is now. Microsoft would only ruin it.
  • You don't understand this deal. This would be fruitful for them both.
  • Just like CodePlex was fruitful.
  • Codeplex wasn't an acquisition though
  • It won't change. MS is smart enough to avoid that. It might actually get cheaper.
  • Just like they "ruined" Skype?
  • Are you trying to say they didn't?
  • They absolutely ruined Skype.
  • No they didnt ruin Skype. FaceTime ruined Skype
  • That's not true.
  • It's good to know that MS is showing their interest in open-source.
  • They have no interest in open-source, its just money for them. If Microsoft required GitHub trust me its bad news for the opensource community. Especially with their past of destroying(Nokia) and shutting down(WM and the list is long) things which do not earn them profit!
  • None of your examples have anything to do with open source. Get over your hate.
  • You don’t know what you’re talking about. MS is the largest open source contributor by far!
  • Microsoft is showing their interest into destroying what's left out of the open source, that is what you mean.
  • As already commented by @parithon, MS is the single largest contributor to the Open Source community. It seems to not matter to many developers -- no matter what MS does to help the community, it's missed due to irrational hate, or hate based on the MS of the 1990s.
  • Please no. My work revolves around GitHub and given Microsoft's track record with acquisitions, I don't want to see GitHub go under.
  • Yeah it's likely. Microsoft really loves Git and GitHub.
  • MS has a pretty solid history of destroying cool startups that they purchase... Skype... Wunderlist... Xamarin... Yammer... Groove... Nokia... Please GitHub don't "sell out" to these weasels. I use Bit Bucket anyway, but seriously GitHub run away from them. Don't make a "deal with the devil".
  • nokia was a start-up?
  • The word Nokia should be capitalized!
  • Whatever
  • Skype, Nokia, groove music ( Xbox music/zune) where not startups
    eBay at one time even owned Skype then they sold 65% of it off to somebody else..... And then Microsoft came and saved it.
    Nokia was losing market share and mind share
    and didn't really wanna be another Android phone OEM
    Back than. Microsoft had there focus in other places
    which led to an all over the place strategy even when it worked.
  • You shouldn't start a sentence with "And".
  • Keep dreaming, Nokia was brought down by MS, heavyweight. Apple helped microsoft during the process and of course their insider Eflop *******, that made sure symbian and meego to be anounced dead even though, Nokia spend millions on Meego developement. Don't come here and tell people your bull's''ht. Microsoft practically destroyed nokia. Probably cause they wanted money, something they could not achive from apple if Nokia would have been around. The better apple and cloud works. The merry ms is. After all, is all about money.
  • Ektosknot: nothing of what you're saying is true
    Nokia accepted the deal with Microsoft because they did not want to be another Android OEM
    and was losing market share/was losing money
  • Support and tools for Xamarin are better than ever. Xamarin Studio even became VS for Mac so more possibilities for them... I won't talk about the rest...
  • Xamarin wasn’t destroyed. It is now built directly into VS and .Net Core 3.0 will be awesome because of their merging the of Xamarins libraries.
  • Xamarin didn't get destroyed lmao
  • Groove was directly developed by Microsoft. And Xamarin got better and gained more developers after Microsoft bought them. What will most likely become with GitHub will be like with Xamarin. They will create a business plan with an option to get private repositories for free under few conditions like Bitbucket have. That will gain even more people on GitHub (including me). When Microsoft bought Xamarin, Xamarin became free for all and gained more developers on it. I remember times when I actually had to pay (I think it is that price if I remember correctly) 20$ per month. Not so cheap in Croatia.
  • Xamarin is way the hell better than it's ever been? They left Skype as a completely autonomous division for way too long, so the failure there is really on the Skype team and would've happened even if they hadn't purchased them, Groove was not an acquisition, Nokia was going bankrupt before they bought them... I can't speak to Yammer, though I don't really see much to suggest that it did poorly under MS, so Wunderlist is the only thing on your list that they broke in purchasing, though the ToDo replacement app is finally starting to hit feature parity.
  • To Do will be replacement when it gains integration with Outlook calendar like Wunderlist. Until that, I am using Wunderlist.
  • It's coming. Uservoice status is 'working on it', so it's in active dev.
  • This is the stat from Github (Their stats for 2017) Which indicates Microsoft is the biggest open source company at this moment. In first position Microsoft appears to have ~1,300 employees actively pushing code to 825 top repositories on GitHub. While projects from Microsoft has garnered all total 263525 stars. Microsoft of 2018 is quite different than the Microsoft from 1998. So at least I won't be skeptical about this acquisition & would give a huge benefit to Microsoft. To think Microsoft can make Github repository better than they actually have been is not a far fetched thought.
  • Always good when you see people have discussion based on some facts and background knowledge. Thanks for the info.
  • No, it is a wishful thought, like believing that Jesus is coming for a second time
  • I know Windows Central people are not interested in this topic, but this is very important movement of Microsoft. Microsoft is not for consumers anymore, they are becoming Sun in 90s.
  • no not Microsoft is Tony into Apple lol
  • No, please don't do that.
  • No, please don't.
  • This wouldn't make *any* sense. Nadella rejected the Salesforce purchase with the reason that buying users isn't what he wants to do. This would be the same. MS already has it's own source code platform and none of the tech that GitHub uses (Ruby) is a MS technology so it'd be the same issues as the Wunderlist and Skype acquisitions. Seperate point: Github is NOT OPENSOURCE. Github is a for-profit closed-source company that provides free hosting for open source projects. Just like MS does. GitLAB would be the open source variant.
  • MS is the largest contributor to GitHub. It makes a lot of sense.
  • Apparently you have no ideea what open source means. Open Source does not mean FREE, it actually means, opened source.
  • Nadella didn't acquire Salesforce because Salesforce was asking for too much money. They made an offer. But, uh, MS is using Git for everything internally. They had to make modifications, and those modifications are being integrated into the mainline Git, and to get it to scale to enterprise levels, you need OS level hooks, so it's currently only possible on Windows though they're working on MacOS and Linux. So it's not so far out there for them to branch into services that can extend the reach of Git itself, and GitHub does that. MS has been focused on supporting a much more heterogenous environment than in the past. As to future integrations, Xamarin is probably the thing to look at. I'd expect more VS integrations.
  • RIP Github. Time to move to other solutions.
  • The other major development tool that MS acquired -- Xamarin -- has benefited mightily from the MS ownership. This is great news for MS, GitHub, GitHub users, and MS's goal of working more closely with developers to encourage more Windows-friendly development.
  • Because Skype and LinkedIn were vastly improved once acquired by Microsoft. Oh wait.
  • Ah, so you expect all acquisitions to be "vastly improved"?
  • LinkedIn seems to be doing just fine? Skype's struggled. But it should be noted that MS has taken, is taking in the case of LinkedIn, a very hands off approach to both of those acquisitions. It's very unlikely that Skype would be in a better place today if MS hadn't acquired them.
  • Look at the closest acquisitions -- Xamarin. That's been a solid win. I'm very excited about this acquisition from the perspective of MS winning back mindshare of developers.
  • On one hand, I'm never a huge fan of powerful corporations becoming even more powerful. On the other, this makes so much sense. Microsoft makes fantastic developer tools and being able to strengthen the connections between those tools and a place to dump your code will make development easier. I'm new to Git, but it took me a few hours to figure out how to commit the work I'm doing in Visual Studio Code back to GitLab, then I forget each time because I don't have to do it that often. I'm imagining much more potential here for it to be a couple easy clicks into GitHub. Similar to how they haven't really changed anything dramatic about LinkedIn - they've just provided better connection points to their other products (Office/Dynamics in that case).
  • That's because good things shouldn't be easy, they should be reliable.
  • The deal has been confirmed now, 7.5 billion for GitHub