Here’s a fun nugget of news about Demand Media.
According to Rafat Ali, founder of paidContent, the New York Times was very close to buying Demand four years ago, but CEO Janet Robinson shot it down.
The irony of this news is that Demand just IPOed, and it’s valued at over $1.5 billion, which means it’s worth more than the New York Times. (Another irony: The New York Times tries to practice journalism that’s exactly opposite what Demand Media does.)
If the New York Times had bought Demand, it doesn’t mean the company would be worth $3 billion today.
In fact, if it had bought Demand, it might be worth less, as investors looked at the company as a drag on NYT resources. Or the NYT may have shut it down, mismanaged it, or any number of alternate outcomes.
We asked the NYT’s PR guy about this story on Twitter. (Didn’t think it was worth bothering him on the phone.) If he tweets back, we’ll let you know.