New York – AOL (NYSE: AOL) announced on Monday that it will acquire The
Huffington Post, the six-year-old news site co-founded by Arianna Huffington,
for $315 million. "We believe in brands, quality journalism, and the
positive role of communities in the world — The Huffington Post shares our
values and the combination of the two companies will create the premier global
and local media company on the Internet," AOL chief executive Tim
Armstrong wrote in a memo to employees.
"The Huffington Post is core to
our strategy and our 80:80:80 focus — 80% of domestic spending is done by
women, 80% of commerce happens locally and 80% of considered purchases are
driven by influencers. The influencer part of the strategy is important and will
Ariana Huffington will become president and editor-in-chief of
a new entity, The Huffington Post Media Group, which will comprise AOL Media —
including TechCrunch, Engadget and Patch — AOL Local & Mapping, and AOL
AOL said that, together with The Huffington Post, its properties boast
117 million monthly U.S. visitors, and 270 million worldwide, based on December
comScore data. HuffingtonPost.com saw 22% growth in 2010.
The company has
raised a total of $37 million in venture capital financing, from backers
including Oak Investment Partners, Greycroft Partners, Softbank Capital, Ken
Lerer and Bob Pittman.