Elon Musk’s $44 billion Twitter takeover is one of the biggest tech acquisitions of all time. Here’s where the billionaire’s deal ranks in tech history
Mergers and acquisitions are a common sight in the tech space, but transactions like Elon Musk’s $44 billion Twitter takeover are rare, to say the least.
In fact, Musk’s move to buy Twitter represents the third-largest tech acquisition of all time—only Microsoft’s January deal to buy the gaming giant Activision Blizzard and Dell’s 2015 move to acquire the data storage leader EMC involved more money.
Outside of the tech space, a number of acquisitions have topped the $100 billion mark, like when Dow Chemical acquired its chemical conglomerate rival DuPont in 2017 for $130 billion, or when the world’s largest brewer, Anheuser-Busch InBev, acquired its rival SABMiller in 2016 for $104 billion.
But when it comes to the tech sector, Musk is making history.
Here’s where the Tesla CEO’s Twitter bid ranks among the largest tech acquisitions ever.
1. Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard: $68.7 billion
In January of this year, Microsoft completed the largest tech acquisition in history when it bought the gaming giant Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. The all-cash deal is helping Microsoft combat its archrival in the gaming space, Sony, and now puts the company in charge of multiple-billion-dollar gaming franchises including Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, and Overwatch.
2. Dell buys EMC: $67 billion
In 2015 Dell acquired and merged with the network storage giant EMC Corp. for what was then a record $67 billion. The deal made Dell, which has since been rebranded to Dell Technologies, the world’s No. 1 seller of storage systems, No. 2 seller of servers, and No. 3 seller of PCs at the time. It also included the cloud computing company VMware, which has since spun off to become its own publicly traded firm.
3. Elon Musk buys Twitter: $44 billion
Musk’s takeover of Twitter is now the third-largest tech acquisition in history. The billionaire entrepreneur bought Twitter in an all-cash deal worth $44 billion, in what he says is an attempt to make the social media giant a “platform for free speech around the world.”
4. Avago Technologies buys Broadcom: $37 billion
Avago Technologies bought rival chipmaker Broadcom in a $37 billion cash and stock deal in 2015. The combined company now goes by Broadcom but trades as AVGO, and has become one of the largest suppliers of semiconductor and infrastructure software products in the U.S.
5. AMD buys Xlinix: $35 billion
AMD bought its chip-making rival Xlinix in October of 2020 in a $35 billion stock deal meant to add to the company’s data center offerings. The acquisition has allowed AMD to compete with Intel using a new larger research-and-development budget and a broader array of products.
6. IBM buys Redhat: $34 billion
IBM bought the enterprise software leader Redhat for $34 billion in July 2019. The deal was meant to boost IBM’s cloud offerings and allow companies with legacy tech to more easily transition to cloud services.
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