AllThingD claims AOL has hired Morgan Stanley and Allen & Co. investment bankers to sell ICQ. The company is reportedly trying to get $300 million from the sale of the instant messaging client, which it bought for $287 million in 1998, with another $125 million in earnouts for the team then. One source said ICQ has about 100 employees and is moderately profitable.
ICQ has lost most of the glory it had a decade ago, but it's still used by 40-50 million unique users per month and is the number one message service in Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Israel and some other small countries.
Sources familiar with the situation said interest in buying the asset from two major non-U.S. companies prompted execs at the online service to put a process in place for a deal that will likely occur after AOL becomes an independent company in December.
AOL is set to spin itself off in less than a month from corporate owner Time Warner (TWX), and sources said selling off peripheral properties likes ICQ is part of becoming a smaller, more focused company.
Sources added that AOL now wants about $300 million for the property.
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Re: AOL to put ICQ up for sale by Anonymous on Saturday, November 21 2009 @ 03:04:23 CET
Nr1 in germany and russia... highly doubt it. please URL me with decent numbers.
Re: AOL to put ICQ up for sale by Thomas De Maesschalck(email@example.com) on Saturday, November 21 2009 @ 03:35:42 CET
Here's a report that compares IM marketshare around the globe. While ICQ is little used in the rest of the world, it does appear to be the dominant IM client in Germany and Russia.