AOL CEO Tim Armstrong today announced three new content partnerships which effectively will hand over coverage for sports, health and real estate. The partners are Sporting News, Everyday Health, and Move.com for real estate. These will replace AOL’s own properties Fanhouse and AOL Health, whereas AOL Real Estate will remain. (Disclosure: AOL owns TechCrunch).
Armstrong suggested on a conference call that these are not areas that are core to AOL. “The reason we did these deals is because we believe the partners we are working with will be better at doing their core business than we are.” AOL isn’t getting completely out of sports, health, and real estate content. Especially when it comes to local (through Patch) or video, AOL will continue to create videos and articles covering these topics, some of which will appear on the partner sites and some of which will appear in AOL properties.
Outsourcing these content areas is supposed to allow AOL to “double down” on the categories it wants to own, namely local, women, and influencers. Although, health traditionally draws a large female audience, so maybe it’s more of Armstrong cutting his losses and going with the strongest sites.
As far as cost cutting and layoffs go, some Fanhouse employees may lose their jobs, but Armstrong is hopeful that they can be absorbed by Sporting News. The number is to-be-determined and could be anywhere from “zero to dozens.” The brand will continue to exist within Sporting News as part of the deal.
The deals are structured essentially to trade traffic from AOL for content and a revenue-split. “The partnerships are built on our ability to offer the partners traffic. In return for that we are getting content and monetization from the partners,” says Armstrong.
The Move.com partnership is a particularly interesting choice, given the past relationship between the two companies back when Move.com was called Homestore. Yes, that Homestore, the one that sparked a government investigation after the dotcom bubble because of roundtrip transactions where AOL invested in the company, and then Homestore repaid the favor by buying a ton of advertising on AOL. The former CEO of Homestore was convicted of insider trading (a conviction which was later overturned). The company changed its name to distance itself from the controversy. But that was a long time ago. Still, an interesting choice for a partner.
AOL is a global advertising-supported Web company, with display advertising network in the U.S., a substantial worldwide audience, and a suite of popular Web brands and products. The company’s strategy focuses on increasing the scale and sophistication of its advertising platform and growing the size and engagement of its global online audience through leading products and programming. History of Aol: AOL was founded in the early 1980’s as Control Video Corp, with an online service, Gameline, for the Atari 2600 console. ...
Sporting News (previously The Sporting News, and known colloquially as TSN) is an American-based sports magazine. It was established in 1886, and it became the dominant American publication covering baseball â€” so much so that it acquired the nickname “The Bible of Baseball”. Along with its affiliated radio network, Sporting News Radio, it is currently owned by Charlotte, North Carolina-based American City Business Journals, a subsidiary of Advance Publications. SN currently covers seven main sports â€” Major League Baseball (MLB),...
Attracting 30 million monthly unique visitors (source: comScore), Everyday Health, Inc. is the largest provider of online health solutions. The company offers consumers, healthcare professionals and marketers with content and advertising-based services. Its broad portfolio of websites and mobile applications span the health spectrum–“from in-depth medical content for condition prevention and management to healthy lifestyle offerings. Everyday Health offers the tools, community, and expert advice people need to live healthier lives, every day. Everyday Health, the television series, is...
Move, Inc. (Nasdaq: MOVE) is the leader in online real estate with 12.7 million(1) monthly visitors to its online network of websites. Move, Inc. operates: Move.com, a leading destination for information on new homes and rental listings, moving, home and garden and home finance; REALTOR.com(R) the official website of the National Association of REALTORS(R); Moving.com; SeniorHousingNet; and TOP PRODUCER Systems. Move, Inc. is based in Campbell, California.