Originally Posted by GTwannabe
1. Buy Discord, get 250 million user accounts
2. Force migration to Microsoft/Facebook/Google/Amazon account to continue using Discord
3. Sell online services/advertising to your 250 million new users - make way more than $12 billion
Originally Posted by Drexion
There's tons of discords with questionable content on them, everything from porn to piracy, a buyout will probably end up killing those communities and driving them to other software.
It's because they have no choice, as they were never profitable, they rely on investments from venture capitalists and alike to stay afloat. Their attempts at creating income (such as a digital game store) either failed or had minimal effect (such as server boosts).
The one thing they do have is the hundreds of millions of active users (and all the profile data that comes with it), that is insanely valuable to other companies who use profiling and targeted advertisements. Investments won't last forever, they reached the point where they had to either (1) go public or (2) sell to the highest bidder.
These two things here are what makes me question it. Discord itself could never make money off its users, but Microsoft can? Sure you can make an argument with advertising, but how many users are just driven away by it? Getting a bunch of users for a free service is one thing, but what happens when you want them to pay (whether directly or through ads). The bottom line is $12 billion is a lot of money for a service that can't make money.
And this is the point where someone points out the "high paid analysts" who say it's a good deal. But those are the same analysts who thought Microsoft buying Nokia was a good idea, and that ended up flushing $7 billion down the drain.
Maybe this is actually a worthwhile acquisition, but based on Microsoft's recent track record I'll remain skeptical. Actually the track record of large company acquisitions in general suggests one should be skeptical. The buyer almost always overpays and the rosy projections that are supposed to justify the purchase price often don't come true.