eBay to Acquire Skype

EBay Inc. has agreed to buy internet phone-calling phenomenon Skype for up to US$4.1 billion, tapping a hot source of growth and putting it into rising competition with rivals from Google to local phone company.

EBay said it will pay US$1.3 billion in cash and US$1.3 billion in stock for explosively growing Skype, which will allow eBay to add free Web telephone calls to its online auctions. It will make a further payout of up to US$1.5 billion if certain financial targets are met.

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