back to article CBS saves CNet from activist investors

CBS is buying CNet Networks - the web publisher behind ZDNet,,,, and techrepublic. These sites will now be combined with CBS's websites. CBS is paying $1.8bn for CNet - a 44 per cent premium on its share price. The combined properties will have 54 million unique users per month in the US …


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  1. Inspector_Morse
    Paris Hilton

    Building new verticals!

    I have heard some corporate BS in my time, but this takes the biscuit. I presume that Quincy Smith has discovered that brown tongues are inferior to [STOP - CENSORED!]

    Paris, because she really does know how to build new verticals.

  2. Mike Moyle

    Re: "Building new verticals!"

    ...Does that translate to English as "Up yours"?

  3. Edward Pearson
    Thumb Down

    I bet this will be like when bought and a HOST of other sites.

    They ripped out the tried and tested design, nuked the content, rebranded, and then watched as one by one, people stopped going to the (previously, very popular) sites.

    Now I'm not saying the exactly same thing will happen here, but when I see: "These sites will now be combined with CBS's websites". Alarm bells start to ring!

    If people wanted to use CBS's website rather than CNet, well, I'd imagine they'd be doing it. As it is, CNet and all it's subsidiaries are bringing in $1.8bn's worth of traffic, why rock the boat?

    Watch this space.

  4. heystoopid

    It's Doomed

    It's doomed to fail badly !

  5. Robert Armstrong

    All your CNET belong to us

    CBS buys CNet.

    HP buys EDS.

    Comcast buys Plaxo.

    Blockbuster buys Circuit City.

    Microsoft buys anything not nailed down to the floor.

    With all these buyers, who says innovation is dead. Why I do. If your business is a loser then just buy another loser and the problem will be solved.

    OK. HP is not really a bad. I think Itanium is great, really I do...

    Time for you to me to buy a Guinness.

    No scientologists were hurt in the creation of this message.

  6. Anonymous Coward

    That's right ...

    "The deal is good news for CNet which has been under pressure from shareholders. In January two institutional investors were pushing to get extra people on the board of directors to reverse CNet's falling share price which has been on the slide since January 2006."

    So how does paying to keep happy more stuffed shirts (fly them around, buy them munchies for meetings, etc.) reverse a slumping stock price exactly?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Its obvious why they brought CNet

    They want the and domain names

  8. Wile E. Veteran

    It's an old business axiom ...

    ... If you can't beat 'em, buy 'em.

  9. DrewHew


    "So how does paying to keep happy more stuffed shirts (fly them around, buy them munchies for meetings, etc.) reverse a slumping stock price exactly?"

    I was wondering the same thing!

    It immediately brought to mind the clamouring of Yahoo! investors to allow the Microhoo deal to go through. (With all due respect to the Yanks) this all is typical of the capitalist (read greedy) mindset of so many individuals in American business and corporate politics.

    These investors (and don't get me wrong - they're in this to benefit financially so I don't fully blame them) are ONLY interested in what gains they can make from the sale of the company - as opposed to what is best for the company in the long term. My opinion, and that of many others, is that Microhoo would have led to the death or stifling of creativity and many projects (including perhaps Zimbra which is Linux-based) as they stripped away everything to get to the search and advertising core. Yahoo, I strongly believe, has a MUCH GREATER potential than that!

    Their shortcoming has actually been NOT realising that full potential, and effectively leveraging what is a large user-base, and huge potential in search and advertising.

    I also agree that maybe we should watch to see if CBS just uses the and domains to push their content. As a techie and daily visitor of (although I've been quite disappointed with their content - or lack thereof - lately) it would really sadden me to see the site transmogrified :D into a network wasteland.

    I'll go have a few drinks now - Verticals anyone???

  10. Steve

    Not since

    Meh, CNet are evil, I've avoided them since they killed and it's music archive and the huge community that revolved around it.

    Good luck CBS!

  11. Reg Varney

    Non-execs are not *necessarily* just noses in the trough

    "So how does paying to keep happy more stuffed shirts (fly them around, buy them munchies for meetings, etc.) reverse a slumping stock price exactly?"

    The whole point of non-execs is to reign-in the excesses/mis-steps of the executive directors, and get them to run the company for the benefit of the shareholders rather than some pet millenial power trip.

    No idea what CNet's strategy is, if they have one, but if their share price is slumping, it patently isn't working, so they need to try something else - the non-execs have a valid role in confirming that whatever they do is going to address this.

    Alternately, they might just want a few free lunches.

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