Specific Media, a digital media company, has announced it has acquired Myspace, previously called MySpace but now stylized as My_____, from News Corporation. As part of the agreement, News Corporation will take a minority equity stake in Specific Media.
Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed. That being said, All Things Digital reports that the sale prices is $35 million and that News Corp.'s stake in Specific Media is less than five percent. Furthermore, the deal includes a halving of Myspace's staff of 400, as well as other cost cuts. Myspace CEO Mike Jones and other top staff will remain only for an interim period (about two months), to help with the transition.
"Myspace is a recognized leader that has pioneered the social media space. The company has transformed the ways in which audiences discover, consume and engage with content online," Tim Vanderhook, Specific Media CEO, said in a statement. "There are many synergies between our companies as we are both focused on enhancing digital media experiences by fueling connections with relevance and interest. We look forward to combining our platforms to drive the next generation of digital innovation."
News Corp. bought Myspace for $580 million in 2005. Initially, the deal paid for itself after Google inked a three-year $900 million search advertising deal the following year. Since then, Myspace has become less and less relevant as a social network and is now largely considered a failed Web property.
Over the past few years, Myspace has been on a steady decline in terms of revenue, mindshare, and traffic. It's even considered one of the slowest social networks. It seems as Facebook grows, Myspace continues to falter. This is despite a recent redesign, a new mobile site, and even a desperate attempt to cling to Facebook for help.
At one point, Myspace was valued at $1 billion. As things started to decline, however, News Corp. hoped to sell the social network for $100 million. Instead, it reportedly got $35 million, which is approximately 6 percent of the original purchase price. That's got to hurt.