Skype has purchased group text-messaging firm GroupMe in a deal worth somewhere between $50 million and $100 million. The startup will remain independent but will likely play a major role in Skype’s mobile and social arenas. It’s a big success for the year-old firm, writes Ben Popper for BetaBeat, who notes two sources pegged the deal at $75 million and $85 million, respectively. And it’s “not just a big win for GroupMe and our amazing investors, but also for New York City,” notes the GroupMe blog.
“As part of the deal, GroupMe will remain in New York, team intact, working on our standalone application. The major difference will be that we will now have access to Skype’s 175 million monthly connected users.” It’s a good deal for the buyer, too, Popper notes: “Skype arguably picked the best of breed to help it conquer the mobile market.” Meanwhile, the company’s founders are getting titles at Microsoft, which acquired Skype earlier this year.