Microsoft bought LinkedIn this month for a massive $26.2 billion, or $196 a share (a generous increase on LinkedIn’s $131 share price). But after Microsoft’s other not-so-successful take-overs, like Nokia, Skype and Yammer, you might wonder why it risked paying such a pretty penny for the social platform. This is our take on it:

Content generator

LinkedIn is much more than just a social media platform for people looking for a job. It’s a specialised, constantly-updated content company. And it’s probably one of the most influential of its kind. In fact, most of its $2.9 billion revenue (a 35% increase on its 2014 figures) was mostly thanks to its published content.

A global org chart

According to the stats, LinkedIn has 433 million users, with two new members joining every second. A whopping 106 million new users also visit the site every month.

But the best part is that all these people are connected – and LinkedIn knows how.

It knows where they live, where they work, who they know, and what they’re good at. LinkedIn is basically a global org chart of the world’s professional network – can you imagine the things Microsoft can do with that kind of information? The possibilities are endless.

It could change Office

By taking over LinkedIn, Microsoft can become a central hub for the business worker. With Microsoft Office already such a big part of the working world, it’s a logical next step.

In the future, Microsoft could connect parts of the LinkedIn service to its Office 365 package, or even embed LinkedIn with Skype or other products.

There is great potential for Microsoft with LinkedIn in tow. It’ll likely change the way a lot of us work. Now it’s just a case of sitting back and waiting for the show to start.