Verizon has talked to AOL about an acquisition or joint venture, according to a report just published by Bloomberg.
Verizon is apparently interested in AOL’s programmatic advertising technology combined with some of its video content, and would look at the buy as a way to catch up with AT&T’s acquisition of DirecTV.
A joint venture would focus mainly on sharing ad technology.
The report says it’s not clear whether Verizon is also interested in AOL’s media properties like TechCrunch and Engadget. With 200 million monthly visitors, AOL is the fourth-most popular network of sites in the U.S, after Google, Yahoo, and Facebook. But AOL is the second-most popular video network, with more than 100 million monthly unique visitors, trailing only Google’s YouTube, according to Comscore figures for November 2014.
Activist investors have recently called for AOL to merge with Yahoo, which would create the single biggest network of web sites.
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