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February 18, 2005
The Old Grey Lady bulks up
The New York Times Company announced plans to acquire About.com from parent company Primedia at a price tag of $410 million. The deal will have a two-fold impact --it will add a "fast-growing, highly profitable" Internet destination to the company's portfolio and enable the New York Times to boost its revenue from the rapidly-growing online advertising business. By adding About.com's 22 million monthly users to its stable of over 40 Internet sites, the New York Times is poised to become the 12th-largest presence in the online world.
Paid Content, as usual, has an exhaustive source of details, data and facts about the deal. (On February 8, they correctly predicted that the New York Times would emerge as the victorious bidder for About.com). A quick snippet from Rafat Ali of Paid Content:
"Make no mistake, it is about search/CPC ad revenues in the short term, first and foremost. Then, of course, the benefits of added traffic over long term. It will be very interesting to see how they execute on the integration of NYTimes.com and About.com. The phrase "adding an alternate model of content creation and aggregation" is a peculiar way to put it, but it denotes blogs and the whole blog media world, so to speak. In short, this is NYT's blog strategy, on the editorial side. Whether they want to characterize it as such, that I doubt... "
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