News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch has finally decided to unload MySpace, selling the property for just six percent of what he paid in 2005
Rupert Murdoch has finally given up. In an exclusive nabbed by All Things D's Kara Swisher, the News Corp. captain has decided to unload MySpace, once the world's largest social network and once the company that Murdoch thought he could anchor his expanding network of media properties to, for just $35 million. The buyer: Specific Media, an advertising network.
The deal, which values MySpace at just six percent of what Murdoch paid for the property back in 2005, has not yet been completed, but sources "close to the situation" have told Swisher that it's a sure thing. As part of the deal, MySpace's staff of 400 will be cut in half and the top executives will be put on the fast track out. News Corp., though, will hold on to a small stake, estimated at somewhere between five and 10 percent.
JULY 2005: $580 MILLION News Corp. purchased MySpace for $580 million in cash. Some reporters speculated at the time that Murdoch was just buying access to the social network's young demographic; he wanted to serve his advertisements against this group. Others argued that this was only part of the equation: Murdoch, they said, was planning on building a competitor to MTV. This second opinion -- that News Corp. would expand MySpace to include a dedicated cable network and more -- became the favored one as plans surfaced for News Corp.'s new headquarters, which showed Fox News and other Murdoch properties taking a backseat to MySpace.