Prosus NV said it struck a $1.8 billion deal to acquire Stack Overflow, an online community for software developers, in a bet on growing demand for online tech learning.
Based in New York, closely held Stack Overflow operates a question-and-answer website used by software developers and other types of workers such as financial professionals and marketers who increasingly need coding skills. It attracts more than 100 million visitors monthly, the company says.
Prosus, one of Europe’s most valuable tech companies, is best known as the largest shareholder in Chinese internet and videogaming giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. Listed in Amsterdam, Prosus signaled its appetite for deal making when it sold a small portion of its equity stake in Tencent in April for $14.6 billion. The Stack Overflow deal ranks among Prosus’ biggest acquisitions.
Prosus invests globally across a range of online platforms focused on areas such as food delivery, classifieds and fintech. It also maintains a more than $200 billion holding in Tencent. Prosus’ parent company, Naspers Ltd. , acquired the Tencent stake in 2001 for $34 million.
The Stack Overflow deal is Prosus’ first outright acquisition in the educational tech space. Prosus already owns stakes in two educational tech companies—Udemy and Codecademy—servicing companies. It is set to make an investment in Skillsoft, a publisher of training software used by businesses as part of that firm’s plan to merge with special-purpose acquisition company Churchill Capital Corp II and list in New York.