AOL management told employees today that it will sell or shut down social network Bebo by the end of 2010.
“AOL is not in a position at this time to further fund and support Bebo in pursuing a turnaround in social networking,” reads a memo, first obtained by PaidContent.
AOL paid $850 million for Bebo in late spring 2008. Then the economy blew up. Then AOL CEO Randy Falco and president Ron Grant got canned. Then Bebo CEO Joanna Shields quit AOL in 2009.
The strategy we set in May 2009 leverages our core strengths and scale in quality content, premium advertising and consumer applications, positioning us for the next phase of growth of the Internet. As we evaluate our portfolio of brands against our strategy, it is clear that social networking is a space with heavy competition, and where scale defines success. Bebo, unfortunately, is a business that has been declining and, as a result, would require significant investment in order to compete in the competitive social networking space. AOL is not in a position at this time to further fund and support Bebo in pursuing a turnaround in social networking.
AOL is committed to working quickly to determine if there are any interested parties for Bebo and the company’s current expectation is to complete our strategic evaluation by the end of May 2010.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.