Microsoft Corp. has officially announced that its acquisition of the Internet video chat company Skype has closed. Skype is now a new business division within Microsoft.
Tony Bates, the chief executive officer of Skype, now assumes the role of Skype division’s president, and will report directly to Steve Ballmer, the CEO of Microsoft. Skype will now support devices from Microsoft, including the Windows Phone, Xbox, Kinect and other Windows devices. Microsoft will also integrate Skype with its services such as Outlook, Lync and Xbox Live.
“Skype is a phenomenal product and brand that is loved by hundreds of millions of people around the world,” said Steve Ballmer. “We look forward to working with the Skype team to create new ways for people to stay connected to family, friends, clients and colleagues — anytime, anywhere.”
With the merger, Skype employees from Estonia, Russia, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, the United States, Sweden, Singapore, Japan, Luxemborg and Hong Kong will be retained.
Microsoft has announced its plan to acquire Skype for $8.5 billion last may. The acquisition had to get clearance from a number of countries before it could be finalized. In June, the acquisition was approved by the U.S. anti trust regulators, and it was cleared in the EU last week.
Ballmer also said that Microsoft would still continue to support the development of Skype for Android and iOS devices, as these non-Microsoft platforms will continue to bring in cash for the company.