Google Acquires Search Startup Aardvark For $50 Million

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Google (GOOG) has acquired search startup Aardvark for $50 million, TechCrunch reports.

Aardvark is a Silicon Valley-based startup founded by a bunch of ex-Googlers.

How it works is you ask it a question via email or IM and it goes to your Facebook friends (and their friends) looking for an answer.

Once it gets one, it IMs or emails you back.

TechCrunch: Google has acquired social search service
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, says a source that has been briefed on the deal, for around $50 million. We first reported on the discussions between the two companies in December. Those discussions have now turned into a signed deal, says our source, and will be announced today or tomorrow.

A couple weeks ago, we heard IAC took a look at Aardvark and passed.

Google is going on a startup acquisition binge these days. Here’s why:

  • Google has a ton of cash.
  • It can’t spend big chunks of it on big companies because of antitrust concerns.
  • Google is losing talented entrepreneurs left and right.

So how well will Google integrate all these new startups? Don’t miss: Grading Google’s Acquisitions

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