Wednesday, September 29, 2010

AOL Buys Three Startups

From Bloomberg Businessweek: AOL Inc., the once-dominant Internet service provider that saw its market value, subscriber base, and influence dwindle or evaporate over the past decade, bought three dot-com startups yesterday (Sept. 28) in a bid to restore its relevance.

 "Chief Executive Officer Tim Armstrong appeared on stage during a tech industry conference in San Francisco to announce the purchase of TechCrunch Inc., an influential news blog and the host of the event. AOL paid about $25 million, according to two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the terms weren’t made public. The company also bought 5min Media, a network of online videos, and Thing Labs Inc., a creator of social-networking tools."

In the last few years AOL had morphed into a news aggregator/originator that, unfortunately, few people were even aware of. At the very least, these acquisitions have revived its profile -- if only temporarily.

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