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LinkedIn’s (NYSE:LNKD) success lies in its ability to let entrepreneurs seek finance, investors seek deals, researchers seek information, and salespeople close deals, according to the professional social networking site’s chief executive Jeff Weiner. “LinkedIn is not about passing time; it’s about saving time,” Weiner said at the AllThingsD conference.
The company’s co-founder and executive chairman, Reid Hoffman, added that he didn’t think of the site as “Facebook for professionals,” because Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) didn’t exist when their company started.
According to the two, LinkedIn, which now has 161 million members, is incorporating innovations like its new iPad application and is continuing to grow by opening up in new countries and offering new languages. The network is also improving its hiring and marketing solutions for companies, as well as trying to get people to use the site more frequently through the workday with initiatives such as LinkedIn Today. Despite the company acquiring SlideShare recently, LinkedIn was focused on building its own products, Hoffman added.
The LinkedIn platform is part of a process that has people in “permanent beta” and “reinventing themselves,” he said.
Weiner added that he saw “the search operating system, the social operating system, and the media operating system as converging, since they all are making their money on advertising.”
He added that LinkedIn’s IPO was just a stepping stone in the evolution of the company, which was focused on long-term success and not quick social trends that obsess Silicon Valley. Social innovation would continue to stay strong, Hoffman added. “I think the Valley declares old trends dead before they should be,” he said.
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