Tech blog ReadWriteWeb was acquired today by SAY Media, as was previously reported. I’ve found out a few more details. The price SAY paid out was under $5 million, after the assumption of ReadWriteWeb’s liabilities, according to a source privy to the details. The company’s liabilities weren’t huge, so the total acquisition price was somewhere around $5 million.
Staff are being asked to sign new contracts with SAY Media today, with contracts going through March, 2012. And a redesign will probably roll out sometime in the first quarter.
SAY Media is itself a result of a merger last year between video ad network VideoEgg and blogging platform Six Apart. ReadWriteWeb is the third online media property acquired by SAY this year after Dogster and Remodelista. (It also acquired digital agency Sideshow).
Why is an ad network buying up media properties? SAY Media is not alone in this strategy. Look at how Glam Media started out as an ad network and then aded on owned-and-operated properties or, for that matter, AOL (which bought TechCrunch and the Huffington Post, but also runs a huge ad network).
It used to be that publishers sold ads in their own media (magazines, newspapers, TV). When ads moved online, ad networks emerged to provide scale across the Web so that advertisers could reach mass audiences. But the price for an ad on a publisher’s site with a highly-focussed audience like ReadWriteWeb is much higher than a run-of-network ad that could run basically anywhere.
Online, you need both an ad network and owned-and-operated sites. The ad network gives SAY Media the scale to attract advertisers in the first place, and the owned sites will juice the average CPMs it can charge. (Here is RWW’s post on the deal).
ReadWriteWeb is a blog that provides analysis of web products and trends. One of the world’s top 20 blogs, ReadWriteWeb speaks to an intelligent audience of web enthusiasts, early adopters and innovators. ReadWriteWeb was founded on April 20, 2003 by Richard MacManus and is now one of the most widely read and respected blogs in the world. It is written by a team of Web enthusiasts.
SAY Media is a digital publishing company that creates amazing media brands. Through its technology platform and media services, SAY enables its portfolio of independent content creators to build passionate communities around key consumer interest areas such as Style, Living, Food and Tech. The company provides simple and accountable ways for the world’s top brands to engage with these passionate audiences, at scale, with a reach of more than 500 million people around the world. SAY Media is headquartered...