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Report: News Corp Offloads MySpace For $35M

Once-mighty online social network MySpace has finally found a new home, as advertising network Specific Media has acquired the company for an alleged $35 million, well under its $100 million price tag.
Online social network MySpace has finally found a new home, as advertising network Specific Media has acquired the company for an alleged $35 million, according to reports. Wall Street Journal blog All Things Digital broke the news Wednesday morning, with MySpace CEO Mike Jones later confirming the report in an email sent to the company's staff of over 400. Former owner News Corp had been attempting to sell the company for $100 million for some time. News Corp acquired the company in 2005 for $580 million, and its valuation shot as high as an estimated $1 billion at one point. The sale comes just one day before the close of News Corp's fiscal year. MySpace was once a formidable portal for browser-based games, but has fallen significantly in the shadow of Facebook. In September MySpace claimed to still have around 30 million active gaming users. By comparison, Zynga's FarmVille alone claimed over double that figure at the time. Other parties who expressed interest in the acquisition included MySpace co-founders Chris DeWolfe and Tom Anderson (who placed their own, separate bids), a group of investors that included Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick, and private equity firm Golden Gate Capital. MySpace is expected to halve its 400-person workforce during the transition, with current CEO Mike Jones continuing to oversee the company for the next two months. Former owner News Corp is also bulking up its game-specific IGN Entertainment brand to spin it off as a separate entity, with IGN recently acquiring Hearst-owned UGO Entertainment (which owns and operates popular consumer game site 1UP).

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