Tencent’s largest shareholder buys Stack Overflow for $1.8 billion. There is no programmer who, looking for a solution to a code question, has not ended up on Stack Overflow at some time in his life. The website for questions and answers, as well as code libraries, is now under new ownership. Technology investment giant Prosus has taken over the platform.
Stack Overflow has positioned itself over the past few years as the go-to place for programming questions. Through its question and answer service, the community shares its knowledge about different programming languages. They say they have more than 100 million visitors per month.
Prosus by name may not be well known. However, this investor is a giant in the world of technology. Among his major milestones is that of buying 46.5% of Tencent in 2001. Two decades later Tencent is one of the most powerful software and entertainment companies in the world. Prosus still holds the majority of the shares, 28.9% of them.
According to the official announcement, the acquisition will be made for a total of $1.8 billion. Prosus has shown particular interest in the collaborative part of Stack Overflow, in Stack Overflow for Teams. With this service, companies can easily communicate and share code and library knowledge among team members. Prosus’ investment, they say, will help expand and improve the platform’s services.
Stack Overflow’s business model is based primarily on advertising. The platform displays ads to visitors and allows companies to post jobs to attract potential new employees. It also generates some revenue from companies’ subscriptions to Stack Overflow for Teams.
Going after academic technology
The acquisition of Stack Overflow is Prosus’ first outright purchase of a company in the academic sector. However, it is not the first investment in this field. Prosus already owns stakes in two academic companies, Udemy and Codecademy. In addition, an investment in Skillsoft is expected shortly.
The idea here is to continue betting on education and remote work even when the pandemic is over. They believe that these are two activities that are here to stay and tools like Stack Overflow can be of great interest in the future. For the time being, according to the press release, nothing will change for users.