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October 26, 2018

Microsoft’s Officially in Charge of GitHub – and It Hasn’t Scared Developers Off

GitHub is "one of the big SaaS opportunities going forward": Satya Nadella

By CBR Staff Writer

“Pull request successfully merged. Starting build” wrote GitHub’s incoming CEO Nat Friedman. “Monday is my first day as CEO”.

He was announcing completion of the $7.5 billion acquisition by Microsoft of the world’s largest developer community.

Close of the deal comes just a week after the European Commission waved through the acquisition, saying it had no competition concerns.

And contrary to some high-profile social media concerns when the deal was initially announced, there has not been a developer exodus from the code repository: indeed since the deal was announced, a further three million have joined.

See also: Microsoft’s GitHub Deal: The Smart and the Smarting

Under a new structure at Github, Nat Friedman, an open source veteran and founder of Xamarin, will continue to report to Microsoft Cloud + AI Group Executive VP Scott Guthrie. Former GitHub CEO Chris Wanstrath will be a technical fellow at Microsoft, also reporting to Guthrie.  Friedman said he will prioritise three things:

  • Ensuring GitHub is the best place to run productive communities and teams
  • Making GitHub accessible to more developers around the world
  • Reliability, security, and performance

In addition, he says GitHub will “double down” on its project “Paper Cuts”, which aims to fix small to medium-sized workflow problems, iterate on UI/UX, and find other ways to make quick improvements across the repository.

During a call with analysts this week as Microsoft reported its Q1 2019 earnings, CEO Satya Nadella said that GitHub revenue will be reported in Microsoft’s intelligent cloud segment, which also includes Microsoft’s fast-growing Azure cloud platform.

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GitHub is “one of the big SaaS opportunities going forward. And so therefore that’s why we want to ensure that everything we do, and the No. 1 priority for Nat and team at GitHub, will be all about maintaining that GitHub community—the ethos around developers at the core,” Nadella said.

He added: “But we are very grounded in the fact that it has to be earned and [is] not something that we will inherit because of being owners of GitHub,” Nadella said.


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