A brief history of LinkedIn

In late 2002, Reid Hoffman recruited a team of old colleagues: Allen Blue, Konstantin Guericke and Jen-Luc Vaillant from SocialNet and PayPal to work on a new idea. Six months later, LinkedIn launches. Let's look at some key events in our brief history of LinkedIn

Asked why the company was called LinkedIn Reid Hoffman said

I decided to start LinkedIn because the professional space was really interesting,” he said in an interview. Like Socialnet, the premise of LinkedIn is based on networking, only this time primarily with your business contacts, and the name is equally straightforward. Joining allows you to get linked (or connected) in(to) your professional network, hopefully providing you with more access to more opportunities through your connections.”

a brief history of linkedin

Even from the start LinkedIn was designed to be a place where business people could network with each other.

Growth is slow at first—as few as 20 signups on some days—but, by the autumn the company does well enough to attract an investment from Sequoia Capita.

In 2004 LinkedIn partners with American Express and reaches out to small business owners. OPEN, the small business network encourages people to sign up to LinkedIn and “Find the people you need through the people you trust…and reach the people you need to get business done.” By the end of 2004 the company has close to 2 million members.

In March 2005 LinkedIn introduces its first premium service: LinkedIn Jobs. Later that year a premium service is started for recruiters and researchers and two new subscription services: Pro and Personal Plus.

By 2006 Personal Profiles are launched and the 5 million member’s milestone is reached.  The company is growing fast and in 2007 there are 13 million members.

2008 and LinkedIn is going global. An office is opened in London and Spanish and French versions of the site are launched. This is followed the following year by an office in Mumbai and the 50 million member milestone is reached.

By the end of 2010 LinkedIn has 90 million members and nearly 1000 employees spread over 10 offices around the world. 2011, 100 million members and the company becomes publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Reid Hoffman writes to the first million thanking them for their help in building the company and spreading the word.

When we founded LinkedIn, our vision was to help the world’s professionals be more successful and productive. Today with your help LinkedIn is changing the lives of millions of members by helping them connect with others, find jobs, get insights, start a business and much more.”

2012 and four more companies including SlideShare are acquired. 19 languages. Ipad app. “Simplify. Grow Everyday” is their motto.

2013 LinkedIn turns 10 years old – 225 million members and growing at a rate of 2 new members per second. Pulse purchased and a new mobile app created. Rich media content can now be added so profiles become more visually appealing. World’s professionals are being connected.

2014 the Identity professional profile replaces the resume. Updated now when not looking for work. The profile becomes more valuable by enabling the user to include, text, pictures, and video to give a richer composite of professional members. 

Since 2014 LinkedIn is focusing on what they call the Economic Graph. A digital representation of the global economy based on over 610 million members, 50 thousand skills, 30 million companies, 20 million open jobs, and 84 thousand schools. In short: it’s all the data on LinkedIn.

Their aim: Through mapping every member, company, job, and school, we’re able to spot trends like talent migration, hiring rates, and in-demand skills by region. These insights help us connect people to economic opportunity in new ways.  And by partnering with governments and organisations around the world, we help them better connect people to opportunities.

By the end of 2018 LinkedIn was used in approximately 200 countries and had 590 million members which makes it the largest professional network in the world. Not only does it give you more opportunities to build long term profitable connections, but also you can easily create economic opportunities and stay in touch with your targeted audience on a long-term basis. Do you have anything to add to our brief history of LinkedIn.?

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