Is there life in the old dog yet?

Looks like a good deal:

The founder of Bebo has bought the social network for $1m just five years after selling it for $850m.

Not that I\’ve ever actually seen the site or anything but that sounds like a nice present from AOL. At both ends of the deal in fact.

3 thoughts on “Is there life in the old dog yet?”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Is AOL possibly the worst investor and the greatest destroyer of share holder capital in modern times? Would you have been better off investing in Sinoforest?

    That is perhaps a tough competition to win in these days of banking collapses, but AOL really does have form. I suppose it is the Japanese syndrome – when they were rolling in money in the 1980s and thought it was going to last forever, they bought a lot of pups.

    I need a sensible sounding start up that Facebook will buy for a few billion. Any ideas? How about instant messaging for your pets? You could teach your dog to send a picture with a bark or two attached.

  2. SMFS,
    It’s a problem common to all cash-rich companies. Microsoft splurged $8.5bn on Skype. Nokia has a cash pile of some €4bn, and they’re burning through it on poor acquisitions. Google bought Motorola for $12.5bn so they could build their own smartphones, yet today it’s Samsung and Sony who make the best Android-based devices. Apple has a vast cash pile (estimated at $145bn) and little idea of how to invest it.

    Investors would be better off if cash-rich companies just returned the cash in higher dividends.

    Dominic Connor explains why this happens in this excellent piece for The Register (the same site where I first read Tim’s thoughts):

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