Verizon swoops for AOL in $4.4BN deal

DetailsEditor | 13 May 2015

In a move that will shake up the mobile video market in the country, leading US communications provider Verizon has acquired online giant AOL.

The acquisition is valued at $4.4 billion and will take the form of a tender offer followed by a merger, with AOL becoming a wholly-owned subsidiary of Verizon upon completion.

Verizon will now have a number of key AOL assets in the digital content and advertising platforms space, such as its subscription business, its premium portfolio of global content brands, including The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Engadget, MAKERS and, as well as its millennial-focused OTT, Emmy-nominated original video content and its programmatic advertising platforms.

The move represents, says Verizon, a 'significant step' in building its digital and video platforms to drive future growth, in particular its LTE wireless video and OTT (over-the-top video) strategy.

"Verizon's vision is to provide customers with a premium digital experience based on a global multiscreen network platform," commented Verizon chairman and CEO Lowell McAdam. "This acquisition supports our strategy to provide a cross-screen connection for consumers, creators and advertisers to deliver that premium customer experience ... we've been strategically investing in emerging technology, including Verizon Digital Media Services and OTT, that taps into the market shift to digital content and advertising. AOL's advertising model aligns with this approach, and the advertising platform provides a key tool for us to develop future revenue streams."

Added his AOL counterpart Tim Armstrong: "Verizon is a leader in mobile and OTT connected platforms, and the combination of Verizon and AOL creates a unique and scaled mobile and OTT media platform for creators, consumers and advertisers. The visions of Verizon and AOL are shared; the companies have existing successful partnerships, and we are excited to work with the team at Verizon to create the next generation of media through mobile and video."