Should Facebook Acquire Skype?

Skype is set to announce a strategic partnership with Facebook over the forthcoming weeks and has just announced that it will team up with Avaya to deliver affordable VoIP solutions for business customers.

Respected tech journalist, Om Malik from Gigaom, wrote on the possibility of a deal that would see Facebook acquire Skype in an all-stock purchase.

Such a deal would make sense even if Ebay managed to shot itself in the foot by acquiring the company years ago and pushing it down its priority list subsequently.

As Malik notes though, the management team at Skype is now laser-focused on making sure that the VoIP service is present on as many platforms as possible, as quickly as possible, knowing that Google, with Voice, may well turn out to be a ferocious rival soon.

Buying Skype would give Facebook some serious firepower; Skype is one of the very few companies worldwide which can match Facebook's number of registered users and the number of installed Skype clients both on desktop and in mobile handsets, is certainly nearer to one billion than to 500 million.

Skype is already generating good money from what is essentially a freemium service thanks to its stickiness and its sheer size. There are a number of people that would be very happy to see such a deal go through.

Malik mentions Marc Andreessen would be one of them and Hong-kong Billionaire Li Ka-Shing, who has vested interest in Facebook and Skype, being the other big fish in the pond.