Myspace Speculation Continues; No Official Word Yet

By David Cohen Comment

Here’s the latest on Myspace: The floundering social network has not been officially sold, nor have rumored layoffs been officially announced, but that doesn’t mean the (still, for now) News Corp.-owned company hasn’t been in the news.

The $100 million News Corp. was seeking for Myspace is apparently a pipe dream, as AllThingsD reported that the sale price will likely fall in the $20 million-$30 million range, possibly topping out at $35 million.

AllThingsD also pegged lesser-known companies Specific Media and Golden Gate Capital as the likely buyers, saying music will remain the focus at Myspace and adding that staff cuts of at least 50 percent are probable.

On the subject of layoffs, TechCrunch reported that at least 150 of Myspace’s total of some 400 employees, or 37.5 percent, will be let go Wednesday, with another group of about 150 put on a transition plan, under which they will still be laid off but will be allowed to work with pay for a few weeks.

Meanwhile, paidContent is calling for a higher purchase price, made up of cash and stock options.

And Fortune blogger Dan Primack tweeted, “I’ve got good reason to believe that if Myspace is indeed sold this week, it won’t be to Golden Gate.”

Finally, eMarketer offered some numbers that put into perspective just how hard Myspace has fallen, saying that the social networking site posted $477.5 million in global advertising revenue in 2007, rising to more than $604 million in 2008 before the fall began. Its total slipped to $469.7 million in 2009 and plummeted to $287 million in 2010, and eMarketer  predicts that the 2011 figure will be approximately $183.5 million.