According to Associated Press, AOL is paying $850 million for an online hangout popular in Europe.
Bebo is one of the largest social networks in Britain, is ranked No. 1 in Ireland and New Zealand and has a global membership of more than 40 million. In the United States, however, it ranks third behind MySpace and Facebook.
Ron Grant, AOL’s president and chief operating officer, said the deal should help AOL expand internationally and Bebo grow in the United States. The all-cash deal, expected to close in a month, also should give AOL an engaged audience from which it can generate additional advertising revenue.
Yes, but the engagement factor isn’t with advertising, it’s with one’s friends.