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CMGI Acquires AltaVista 28

[Dilbert] was the first to send out the word that CGMI has officially purchased Alta-Vista from Compaq. The two companies also formed a "strategic" partnership-whatever that means. CGMI wants Compaq's muscle behind their portal site, and Compaq wants to stop bleeding money. Total purchase price: 2.3 billion dollars. Sheesh.
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CMGI Acquires AltaVista

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  • they own like 10% of lycos [] too. don't really know what that means, but i thought it was interesting enough.

  • Based on this valuation, can we estimate what percentage of Digital the Altavista property genuinely represented? I think it's amazingly high (considering what a huge company DEC was in the first place.) -Paul
  • In a fair world, Slashdot would have sold for 2.3 billion, and some Alta Vista would be on the board at Andover.Net...

    Our little society doesn't do a good job of valuing things.

  • Did anyone notice that when Compaq announced

    that AV was for sale, it improved?

    I use google these days anyway.

    Your Favorite OS Sucks.

  • Is it just me or is the scale of these net.mergers unfathomable? Didn't Excite go for about $7 billion? Meanwhile, I heard that the market value of the big one, Yahoo!, recently exceeded that of General Electric. Altavista is not even clearly 2nd tier anymore, as best I can tell -- maybe 2.5 tier.

    Well, there go my plans for a hostile takeover of Yahoo! ;)
  • The /. acquisition was the biggest one of the day for a while...

    Do you think they timed it this way?
  • Well, you could try their website at [], for starters.
  • Oh I dunno. If you can get $2.3 billion for a tired old search engine like AltaVista what do you think Rob & Jeff got for a dynamic & innovative site like slashdot (reaching thousands of dynamic & innovative people like us)? It's gotta be at least $25billion or so, doesn't it?


    Regards, Ralph.
  • Is it just me or is the scale of these net.mergers unfathomable?

    It would be if they were actually spending real $, but it's mostly stock swaps, which are worth billions on paper, but don't map back onto any sort of assets.

  • I like Google because it has no ads, but it doesn't offer all the features that I've been used to with AltaVista. For example, you can't even search by phrases in Google (99% of my searches). Yeah, I've noticed they improved, too. No porn ads in searches!
  • FYI...
    2.3B did not entirely by Alta Vista. It only bought them an 83% stake in the company.
  • Yes, I know people there too and those numbers seem to be correct. But are sex-related queries still the most popularity?
  • Last I heard AV had over 250 million non-duplicate web pages indexed, and knew of (but hadn't indexed) several hundred million more. One thing mentioned on the CNBC interview today is that CMGI will continue growing the index, and hopes to have "the entire web" indexed over the next few years, which they think will be over one billion pages.

    I believe that the peak query rate is over 600/s,
    which means completing a query every 1.5ms. Good thing computers are getting faster, memory is getting denser, and 64-bit addressing is a reality.

  • According to, which is who leases out the ad space on AltaVista, it gets 1.4 Billion hits per month, which breaks down to something like 46 million per day on average? You can actually check out the price of advertising(and the hit average on listed links) of Altavista at ..

    http://www.doubleclic []

    .. But because of the pricing structure it's impossible to say what their income from it may be. Even if the profit on ad's on their site were marginal, say, one tenth of a cent per hit, thats still 1.4 Million a month. Not to mention the deals they have with RealNames,, and the sales from the search engine.
  • AltaVista has 475 employees. What could they possibly all be doing? Does it really take that many people to run a search engine, or is it now 10 people handling the search engine, and 465 people responsible for putting shopping, auctions, email, stock quotes, and other junk on their pages to turn them into Yet Another Portal?

    They had revenues of $40 million, but that wouldn't even pay everyone's salary.

When speculation has done its worst, two plus two still equals four. -- S. Johnson