News Corp has sold MySpace to Specific Media for $35 million, according to AllThingsD. Just six years ago, it paid $580 million. That's a colossal loss both in percentage terms (-94 percent) and dollar terms (-$545 million).
What went so terribly wrong?
In the case of MySpace, you can't blame News Corp too much because it thought it was buying the leader in the social networking space. Judging by the growth of social networking since then, $580 million is actually a cheap price to pay.
However, the mistake News Corp made was betting on the wrong horse. The following telling figures provided by ABC, citing comScore, illustrate that Facebook came out as the top dog of social networking while MySpace has flopped:
Visitors Per Month
2005 8 million 22 million
2011 157 million 35 million
There are many theories as to why MySpace lost, including inferior features and too much advertising. It's even more difficult to figure out if rigorous analysis back in 2005 could have yielded the conclusion of MySpace's eventual demise.
Whatever the case, News Corp's MySpace investment turned out horribly. Click 'Start' to view five more cases of Internet acquisitions gone wrong.