36 posts and columns on iLike
Digital music is a lousy business. Almost everyone who tries it loses money, and even mighty Apple says its iTunes Store is basically a break-even proposition. But if Google does it right, it makes perfect sense for the search giant to jump in anyway.
Now that the digital equivalent of a super-vac, MySpace CEO Owen Van Natta, has sucked up some decent music start-ups–Imeem and iLike–for a song, to bolster the social networking site’s efforts to expand into an entertainment portal, what’s next? According to several sources, the News Corp. unit has turned its omnivorous attentions to Flixster, the popular social networking site for movies. Whether this is an acquisition or more of a larger partnership deal with News Corp. digital entertainment sites is unclear. Several sources said a purchase was a possibility, while others talked about a more complex deal that did not necessarily mean a purchase.
On Friday, I reported that Apple was buying Lala at a fire-sale price, which meant that investors in the music service wouldn’t get their money. I was wrong. Apple ended up paying around $80 million for the company, according to multiple sources. That’s less than half what investors valued the company at in 2008, but it’s more than the $35 million the company raised throughout its life. Which means that some investors could get their money back and more.