IAC Bags About.com from the N.Y Times for $300M Cash

Interactive/IAC has recently confirmed the news that it will acquire About.com from the New York Times for a price of $300 million in cash.

The companies are supposed to make the deal official either later tonight or tomorrow morning. The deal, however, is reported to close in next few weeks.

The acquisition will also include ConsumerSearch.com and CalorieCount.com.

As per some sources, Answers.com was also interested in buying About.com, but its offer was valued at $270 million, less than IAC’s offerings.

N.Y Times was reported to pay $410 million for the information portal in 2005, which the firm has sold at a discounted rate of $300 million.

According to Alexa, the provider of global metrics, About.com ranks at No. 37 in the U.S. in terms of traffic, and 80 worldwide.

In the last quarter, ad revenues of the site went down nearly 9 percent to $25 million; operating costs went up by some 15 percent to $15.2 million; and the site had an operating loss of $187 million. In its quarterly earnings in July, the NYT wrote down the value of About.com by $195 million.

As About.com was seeing a decline in traffic, the site got less fit for the NYT. But, it can prove to be good for IAC, which already owns various properties that also function on a similar business model.

IAC can be good for About.com as the former can pool its resources together to bring down some costs on the site. About.com can also be one more outlet for the advertising network that runs across the rest of the IAC range.… Read the rest

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