Google (GOOG) has finally admitted that its investment in AOL (TWX) has lost most of its value — and that the impairment is no longer “temporary.” In its Q4 earnings report today, Google announced that it wrote down $726 million of its $1 billion investment in AOL.
Google’s $1 billion, 5% stake valued AOL at $20 billion in 2005. Subtracting 72.6% suggests that Google now values AOL at $5.48 billion.
Not surprising. Back in November, Barclays analyst Doug Anmuth estimated that Google would write down about half of its investment.
Of course, Google’s investment came with other benefits — namely, a search and display ad partnership, and collaboration on video and IM.
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