As predicted, AOL yesterday announced that it's to buy TechCrunch, the technology blog founded by Michael Arrington, in a deal believed to be worth around $25 million.
In a move aimed at further bolstering AOL's editorial content, TechCrunch, along with its subsidiary sites and conference business, will join AOL's network of websites. These include Engadget; Switched, which covers the techie aspects of entertainment, sports, art, fashion and lifestyle; TUAW, the unofficial Apple weblog; and DownloadSquad.
"TechCrunch and its team will be an outstanding addition to the high-quality content on the AOL Technology Network, which is now a must-buy for advertisers seeking to associate their brands with leading technology content and its audience," said Tim Armstrong, chairman and CEO of AOL.
In a blog post, TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington said he was persuaded to sell up because of a shortage of good technical staff.
"I was tired of our endless tech problems, our inability to find enough talented engineers who wanted to work, ultimately, on blog and CrunchBase software. And when we did find those engineers, as we so often did, how to keep them happy," he said.
"AOL of course fixes that problem perfectly. They run the largest blogging network in the world and if we sold to them we’d never have to worry about tech issues again."
TechCrunch also hosts conferences and events including The Disrupt series and the Crunchies Awards, and AOL says it plans to continue and build upon this business.
"Engagement with thought leaders is as important to AOL as our engagement with our contributors, audiences, publishers and advertisers, and TechCrunch's conferences and websites will give us a promising, additional springboard to join and amplify these conversations," said David Eun, President of AOL Media and Studios.