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ICQ going to be flogged to the Russians


Developers and pirates paradise

messaging tool beloved by pirates and developers seems set to be flogged to the Russians.

ICQ which is currently owned by AOL is set to be flogged to Russia’s Digital Sky Technologies. Although talks are in early stages, it seems that AOL is keen to flog off some of its family silver after being spun off from Time Warner.

AOL’s chief executive, Tim Armstrong, said recently that the company would seek to sell noncore assets as it reshapes itself into an online media player. ICQ is apparently worth $200 million. AOL bought ICQ’s parent, Mirabilis, from its four founders in 1998 for $287 million in upfront cash and $120 million in later payments tied to certain performance milestones.

Ironically the outfit bought ICQ because it was a rival. Digital Sky Technologies, a Russian investment firm, is probably best known for paying $200 million for a 3.5 percent stake in Facebook this summer.
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