CBS is making a major Internet and news powerplay, acquiring CNET for $11.50 per share (44% more than CNET is trading at) for a total of $1.8 Billion. Acquiring CNET and its $406 million per year in revenue is a big and bold move by CBS, which was the original parent company of iWon Search (now an IAC company) when it launched.
Remember those golden days of search? When the big networks were all getting into search : NBC launched Snap.com, ABC launched Go.com and the Go Guides format, and CBS went “Search & Win” almost almost a decade before Microsoft. Are things coming around full circle?
CNET Networks’ sites will be combined with CBS’s list of online destinations and interactive businesses, and expect some MSNBC style cobranding from the company online and off. CBS has a fairly poor online presence outside of sports, so a synergy between CBS and CNET does make some sense (let’s also remember that CBS Corporation and Viacom/MTV are both owned by the same parent company), but will it be a success?
Personally, I’m excited to see if CBS does something cool with Search.com (come on CBS, buy Teoma or Gigablast, just buy one and launch your own engine!!!)
CNET properties include :
- CNET news.com
CBS online properties include :
- CBS Radio
CBS also adds that its network of the CBS Audience Network sites which power the online presence of local affiliates is made up of more than 300 partner Web sites and reaches 82% of all online users in the United States.