LinkedIn Buys Recommendation Software Concern mSpoke

LinkedIn made its first purchase Aug. 4, buying recommendation software maker mSpoke for an undisclosed sum. The deal will boost LinkedIn's business networking capabilities.

LinkedIn Aug. 4 agreed to buy recommendation software startup mSpoke to boost its social network of more than 75 million users.

Financial terms for the deal, LinkedIn's first purchase, were not disclosed.

mSpoke makes three core products for content publishers, research analysts and individuals: mPower, mTrend and mSense.

mPower includes widgets and personalized e-mails that let Website publishers filter content based on users' preferences.

mTrend provides an API to let companies monitor competitors and trends.

mSense provides tools that analyze each content item, produce metadata and then annotate content as it flows through your system.

Ideally, LinkedIn will use such products to help provide recommendations to users about other users based on their business networking activity on LinkedIn.

"mSpoke and LinkedIn's shared focus on generating relevant content make this acquisition a natural fit for us," LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner said in a statement.

"We're actively investing in solutions that help deliver valuable professional insights to LinkedIn members."

That last statement is the key thrust for the buy.

Facebook and business social software such as Jive and IBM Lotus Connections offer recommendation tools that suggest new people for users to follow.

LinkedIn could use mSpoke to suggest people and career groups and other networking information to people on LinkedIn.

mSpoke was founded by CEO Sean Ammirati, who is also COO of popular tech blog ReadWriteWeb, Chairman Dave Mawhinney and CTO Dean Thompson.