From $1 billion, to $580 million to this week's $35 million, my_____ (Myspace) has been sold again. News Corp. has sold the once-famous social networking site to Specific Media, an advertising network, for below what they wanted to, and well below what they paid for it. This isn't exactly the death that 24/7 Wall St predicted would happen, but the fat lady hasn't quite sung her last note yet.
The deal will also cut my_____'s staff in half from 400 to 200 employees, along with other obvious cuts. CEO Mike Jones (who?) will stay with the company temporarily through the transition.
For press releases and more, check after the break.
Luckily, News Corp. got this disaster off of their hands before the week was out, which was the end of their fiscal year, so their books wouldn't be in the toilet from day one of the new year. However, after the deal is finalized, they will still hold a small stake in the company.
Reports have it that other bidders involved included founders of Myspace, Chris DeWolfe and Tom Anderson. Strangely, there was also a bid put in that Activision CEO Bobby Kotick was a part of, but unrelated to the Activision brand. As it would turn out, Justin Timberlake is involved with Specific Media and will play a big part in the upcoming plans for my_____. With Timberlake onboard, we should be in store for a mother loving good time!
Why did Specific Media buy the company? They put out the $35 million specifically (ha) for targeted ads and marketing. They will now have access to millions of files of user information that they can now use to create a media company with its own ad space as opposed to targeting certain sites and then selling ad space as a middle man.
Press release from Specific Media.
SPECIFIC MEDIA ACQUIRES MYSPACE FROM NEWS CORPORATION
Los Angeles, Calif. — June 29, 2011 — Specific Media, a digital media company, today announced it has acquired Myspace from News Corporation. As part of the agreement, News Corporation will take a minority equity stake in Specific Media. Additional terms of the agreement are confidential and will not be disclosed.
“Myspace is a recognized leader that has pioneered the social media space. The company has transformed the ways in which audiences discover, consume and engage with content online,” said Tim Vanderhook, Specific Media CEO. “There are many synergies between our companies as we are both focused on enhancing digital media experiences by fueling connections with relevance and interest. We look forward to combining our platforms to drive the next generation of digital innovation.”
Specific Media is an innovative global interactive media company that enables advertisers to connect with consumers in meaningful, impactful and relevant ways. Founded in 1999 by brothers Tim, Chris and Russell Vanderhook, Specific Media is currently headquartered in Irvine, CA and operates offices around the world.
Internal memo from CEO Mike Jones.
From: Mike Jones
Sent: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 11:26 AM
To: Myspace All
Subject: IMPORTANT COMPANY NEWS
Today, we are announcing that Myspace will be acquired by Specific Media, one of the world’s leading online media and advertising platforms. Over the next few days you will be hearing from the team at Specific, including their CEO, Tim Vanderhook, regarding their exciting plans for Myspace and how it fits in with the overall vision of their company.
In conjunction with the deal, we are conducting a series of restructuring initiatives, including a significant reduction in our workforce. I will assist Specific with the transition over the next two months before departing my role as Myspace CEO.
I wanted to take a minute to thank you all for the incredible experience it has been to lead this company and to work closely with all of you over the past several years. While I regret we won’t be working together at Myspace any longer, I am very proud of the work we have done here and believe we have performed with excellence — even under extremely difficult circumstances.
My time here at Myspace represents the most engaging and challenging time of my professional career. I have found our team to be comprised of the best people I have come across in our industry.
You can read the press release below. Once again, thank you for all of your hard work and dedication.