Tell me it isn’t so! But it definitely appears that Skype is “in play” to be bought. At least that is the word from Bob Cringely in his latest post at i,cringely According to him, Skype was “almost” sold last week to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp for $3 billion. Not clear why the deal did not go thru, although Cringely suggests that Murdoch wasn’t really serious about buying Skype but wanted to get a look at their books for a free education about the VoIP business.
Cringely also thinks that the $3 billion price tag is a pretty good deal. Think of it this way: If 20 million of Skype’s total installed based of 140 million are active users, then the market value of a Skype customer is around $150. While that may seem like a lot of money, it is around 10 percent of the imputed value of a traditional telephone, mobile telephone, or cable television customer. So from which of these three categories is the next Skype suitor likely to emerge? For now, I’ll go along with Cringely and bet on a mobile carrier with no fixed telephone assets. In fact, I’ll put my money on Vodaphone.