Tech Crunch is reporting that AOL may be selling Bebo, its social network. Last year the Internet provider bought up the ‘next big deal’ for $850 million. It never lived up to its promise.
One I trust has touted that the network is on the bidding tables at a mere $200 million. But this could just be a rumor. Both AOL and Bebo are denying an talk of a sale.
In January 2007 Bebo was being marketed by founders Michael and Xochi Birch hired Joanna Shields as their international president.
Social networking was still the new hit ticket and every real Internet company wanted their own shining site to draw in the web traveler.
As Tech Crunch reports:
“Shields was extremely really good at getting the slightly dim media buying agencies to automatically tell their clients that they just had to be on Bebo.”
Bebo was not pitched as a standard social network though. It was better, had more appeal as a new era television network.
It looked great. There was a problem though, no one figured out how to engage the Bebo user. That is how a social network falls flat on its face.
“Bebo was great at the time but now we are disappointed because socnets [social networks]are not about sending loads of traffic to a profile page. At the time it was fine, but people are now disappointed. You don’t get ‘friended’ much as a brand. It’s not just about being inside one socnet but about being everywhere.”
So is it true that AOL is taking a $650 billion dollar loss just to get Bebo out of its portfolio? We’ll have to keep an eye out on this one.