If Liz Gannes’ story about Linkedin acquiring Rapportive at AllThingsD is correct, the contact management sector is set for a shake out.

A shake out is long overdue: single-user and small business contact management tools remain a weak spot. At the time of writing there isn’t a single must-have contact management tool. With Rapportive on-board, Linkedin has the technology and data to create a category killer.

Gannes says the companies concerned declined to comment on reports of the take-over and the deal has yet to close.

Rapportive is a Gmail add-on which shows basic CRM-like information about an email sender in a sidebar on the mail application’s screen. Rapportive is lightweight with the cloud doing the heavy lifting. It pulls data from social media sites and can show photographs and recent on-line activity.

With Linkedin owning a huge, largely up-to-date database of contact and job movement details, the take-over could lead to improved reporting on incoming emails.

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