Monday, March 21, 2005
The corporate boards from both companies were in talks all weekend negotiating what appears to be an all-stock deal. If approved, the price tag would be a substantial premium over Ask Jeeves valuation of $1.4 billion as of Friday’s stock market close.
The acquisition of Oakland, California-based Ask Jeeves by IAC would mean they own a known brand name and get a foothold in revenues from search engine advertising. The company also would become a direct competitor with companies such as Google, Yahoo!, Amazon.com and Microsoft who also have launched their own high-profile internet search engines. Ask Jeeves also owns other brands, including Excite.com and iWon.com.
Diller has built InterActiveCorp on the backbone of the cash generated by Home Shopping Network, a company he used to bankroll the purchases of a large portfolio of internet and electronic commerce companies. These include Expedia, Ticketmaster, Match.com, CitySearch and the LendingTree.