Home CBS Now Buying Web 2.0? Last.fm for $280m

CBS Now Buying Web 2.0? Last.fm for $280m

A couple of weeks ago we talked about how CBS’ new online strategy was to partner with as many Web 2.0 sites as possible and spread their content around. Today, CBS seems to have deviated from that plan by announcing that they will pay $280m in an all cash deal to purchase music social network Last.fm.

This is the largest Web 2.0 acquisition in the United Kingdom ever, according to the BBC. Last.fm, which is five years old and earlier this year added a video component to its site, has about 15 million active users. Last.fm said they have been approached multiple times in the past about acquisition, but decided CBS’ offer was the right one at the right time.

“Last.fm is one of the most well established, fastest growing online community networks out there,” said CBS President and CEO Leslie Moonves. “Music has the unique ability to unite large groups of people and engage them around a shared passion. Part of our interactive strategy has been to build communities around all of our properties. CBS Radio has given us a powerful way to create such communities for decades, and it continues to do so. With Last.fm we’re adding a next-generation platform to allow audiences to communicate with us and each other as never before.”

Moonves repeated the line given by CBS Interactive President Quincy Smith last week that CBS is transitioning “from a content company into an audience company,” and said that Last.fm will help the company attract a younger audience.

The acquisition seems to be a slight deviation from the Audience Network strategy that CBS has been pushing. Smith famously told the Wall Street Journal earlier this month that CBS couldn’t expect users to come to them and instead had to spread their content around. Purchasing a single distribution point seems dissonant with that sentiment. But this acquisition makes sense, too.

CBS is the owner of one of the largest terrestrial radio groups in the United States with a large number of music stations. Extending their reach online is a good idea. Further, considering how well the MySpace acquisition has turned out for rival media conglomerate News Corp. (Fox), acquiring a fast-growing social network certainly appears smart. And since Last.fm already embraces the idea of spreading their content around (via widgets), they fit well with the new CBS strategy.

CBS has moved beyond simply courting Web 2.0, they’re now in the business of buying Web 2.0 as well. DO you think this is a good move for them?

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.