New York
– Two years after paying $850 million for the social network, AOL (NYSE:  AOL) said that it
now plans to either sell or shut down Bebo. In a memo to employees published by
PaidContent, the company said that it simply can’t compete in the space with
the likes of Facebook and MySpace.

"Bebo, unfortunately, is a business
that has been declining and, as a result, would require significant investment
in order to compete in the competitive social networking space," wrote Jon
Brod, executive vice president of AOL Ventures.

"AOL is not in a position
at this time to further fund and support Bebo in pursuing a turnaround in
social networking."

Brod said that the company plans to come to a final
decision about Bebo by the end of May.

Bebo currently counts approximately 5.1
million users in the U.S.,
compared with 210 million for Facebook, according to comScore.


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