Lycos Sold for $36M to Ybrant

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Lycos Sold for $36M to Ybrant

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In May of 2000, Lycos was acquired by Terra Networks, the internet arm of Spanish telecom giant Telefónica for $5.4 billion. Do you remember how this company used to be one of the top sites online? It really was one of the symbols of the dotcom bubble. Although you never hear Lycos mentioned anymore it is interesting to note the company has an Alexa ranking of 1,443 meaning it is in the top 1,443 most popular sites.

Moreover the company says it consistently averages 12 - 15 million monthly unique visitors in the U.S. and moreover that it reaches nearly 60 million unique visitors globally.

So what do people do on Lycos? Here is the surprise. You may have imagined it is a search play but no. Many visitors, 35% in fact visit the company's Tripod area which is dedicated to webhosting. Mail users account for just over 25% and search users account for 18% of traffic. Angelfire at 4.5% is also a webhosting destination.

The news isn't really earth-shattering but it just reminds you of how sky-high web valuations didn't pan out for the majority of sites but a few like Google, Priceline and Amazon actually exceeded the expectations of many.

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It should be noted that what Daum sold is a fraction of what it bought in 2004 and thus the purchase price is not really 38% of the original price. Over the last 5 years, Daum was able to sell off many non-core business divisions of Lycos and therefore recoup a lot of its initial investment. It sold Lycos' Quote.com (and ragingbull.com) and Wired.com businesses for a combined $55 million in 2006. It also sold Matchmaker.com, Getrelevant.com and Webmonkey.com in smaller transactions. Thus, all told Daum has now sold various parts of Lycos and Lycos itself for a around the same amount of money it spent to acquire Lycos in 2004. if anything, Lycos itself has held its value since 2004, and was profitable in 2009 and will be very profitable in 2010. Not only has Lycos survived, it is now innovating again. People should look at tripod.com. It's been completely revamped, and is now using Lycos' proprietary webon technology for web-building.

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