MySpace’s fate is decided: The former top dog of the social networking world has seen better days and will be sold to the highest bidder. Its chapter as an independent site is quickly coming to a close, as AllThingsDigital claims this coming week it will open itself up for sale negotiations. Despite its extremely depressing financial history, there are a handful of companies interested in MySpace, and it could be sold within two weeks time. So who’s at the front of the ring, wildly throwing money to bring MySpace home? Well, no one, but here’s who is thinking about acquiring the social network of yesterday, and why they may want it.
DeWolfe is the founder of MySpace, and back in its glory days (if–for some of us–you remember middle school) it was quite the Internet sensation. Sure Tom – we all remember Tom! – Anderson was the better known half of the site’s early days. DeWolfe served as CEO and was instrumental in its creation, and he was behind the company’s business side until 2009, when he stepped down. He was largely responsible for MySpace TV and MySpace Impact, as well as its music and film platforms – the sole products it’s surviving on these days.
According to Reuters, DeWolfe–as well as MySpace’s current management team–are interested in retaking the site. From the sounds of it, this would more or less be one final attempt to eke something out of the site and spin it off into something…else. But this just seems like it would add insult to injury. It’s time to let go and see what else MySpace can become. Or let it fade into oblivion, either one.
Reuters also says Chinese Internet site Tencent is one of the interested parties. Tencent is one of the largest Internet companies in the world that just happens to already have a thriving social networking enterprise of its own called Qzone. It wouldn’t be surprising to see the company spin MySpace into something mildly successful in China. Of course it also signals that the site has an interest in US properties and gearing a product for American audiences.
The most popular contender is music video site Vevo. It seems like the most natural place MySpace could succeed in, finally capitalizing on the site overhaul that made it into an entertainment-focused platform. There’s been talk about a joint venture that would spin out of the deal, but Vevo’s been cagey when it comes to committing. MySpace has had a difficult transition from being driven by user profiles and engagement to its new music and video angle, and the merger could be the best opportunity for the site to realize some of this potential. While this solution could be the best option for seeing MySpace live on, it might not be the most profitable.