Microsoft is in discussions with Discord to acquire the gaming-focused chat software for more than $10 billion, according to sources.
Overview of Discord
Discord has about 140 million monthly users and made $130 million in revenue last year, The Wall Street Journal recently reported, though the company isn’t yet profitable. Its last valuation was $7 billion after a funding round in December generated $100 million.
Discord is a chat app, similar to programs such as Skype or TeamSpeak, or professional communications platforms like Slack. It’s geared specifically toward video game players, providing them with ways to find each other, coordinate play, and talk while playing. It supports video calls, voice chat, and text, allowing users to get in touch however they please.
It is currently the most popular, widely used communication channel, not only in gaming circles but even in professional environments and various communities as well. The integration of channels and different bots inside the servers has made it an extremely flexible option for a wide range of communities online.
Discord is now reckoned to have more than 140 million monthly active users and itself claims that people can spend up to four hours a day talking on the platform.
Discord’s Imminent Deal
VentureBeat reported earlier today that Discord was exploring a $10 billion-plus sale after multiple potential buyers expressed interest, and that it had signed an exclusive acquisition discussion with one party, suggesting a deal could be close. Bloomberg’s sources say the deal isn’t imminent, however, with one person saying Discord would be more likely to take itself public than seek an acquisition.
Currently, discord’s software is free for most users, but the company makes money through $9.99 monthly Nitro subscriptions that offer more advanced features like higher resolution screensharing, extra sticker packs, and larger upload limits. Due to the vast amount of investment over the years, the company are looking for alternatives to generate returns for their investor’s investments, hence the recent talks.
However, many analysts still believe the company would prefer to list on the stock market rather than sell itself.
Discord Community’s Reactions
Upon hearing of Microsoft’s talk to acquisitive for $10 billion dollars, communities in discord has risen up to discuss the topic, some of the consensus collected are:
- Worries of discord being integrated poorly into Microsoft’s Skype
- Concerns of direct integration with a Microsoft account which requires users to tie further personal information that was not required before
- Potential of users migrating to other gaming voice comms applications such as TeamSpeak if Microsoft’s acquisition of Discord turned out to be detrimental to the platform