LinkedIn wants to make sure you know when your connections get mentioned in the news.
The career networking website said in a blog post Monday that it is buying Newsle, a three-year old startup that issues alerts when news articles and blog posts mention users’ friends or contacts. LinkedIn (LNKD) did not disclose how much it would pay for the San Francisco-based service, which it plans to integrate into its own site to allow users to receive notifications when their professional contacts are in the news.
Newsle said in its own blog post that it will continue operating as “a standalone service” for the time being and that its core team of engineers, along with cofounders Axel Hansen and Jonah Varon, will be joining LinkedIn. Newsle has grown over three years to reach roughly two million users, while raising $2.6 million in funding over that time.
For LinkedIn, the main draw of Newsle is the company’s algorithms. Ryan Roslansky, LinkedIn’s head of content products, specifically mentioned them in announcing the deal by saying that Newsle can find “blogs and articles that mention you or anyone you care about – colleagues, bosses, industry thought leaders, etc. – and notifies you seconds after they’ve published.”
As Fortune noted in a cover story last summer, LinkedIn has been trying to expand its social-networking services to move beyond the perception of the company as a digital resumé site. Those efforts have not included too many large transactions, though LinkedIn did pay $120 million to acquire data-driven job matching startup Bright in February. And, last year, LinkedIn paid $90 million for mobile news-reading startup Pulse.
LinkedIn’s stock was up more than 2% late Monday afternoon.