AOL has agreed to buy The Huffington Post, the news, analysis and lifestyle website, for $315 million, the U.S. Internet company announced on Monday.
Founded in 2005, The Huffington Post now counts U.S. 25 million unique monthly visitors, according to AOL.
The transaction will create a global, national, local, and hyper-local content group for the digital age - leveraged across online, mobile, tablet, and video platforms.
The new group will have a combined base of 117 million unique visitors a month in the United States and 270 million around the world, AOL sid in a statement.
As part of the transaction, Arianna Huffington, The Huffington Post's co-founder and editor-in-chief, will be named president and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group, which will include all Huffington Post and AOL content, including Engadget, TechCrunch, Moviefone, MapQuest, Black Voices, PopEater, AOL Music, AOL Latino, AutoBlog, Patch, StyleList, and more.
"The acquisition of The Huffington Post will create a next-generation American media company with global reach that combines content, community, and social experiences for consumers," said Tim Armstrong, Chairman and CEO of AOL. "Together, our companies will embrace the digital future and become a digital destination that delivers unmatched experiences for both consumers and advertisers."
"This is truly a merger of visions and a perfect fit for us," said Huffington. "The Huffington Post will continue on the same path we have been on for the last six years - though now at light speed - by combining with AOL. Our readers will still be able to come to the Huffington Post at the same URL, and find all the same content they've grown to love, plus a lot more - more local, more tech, more entertainment, more finance, and lots more video."
AOL has agreed to purchase The Huffington Post for $315 million, approximately $300 million of which will be paid in cash funded from cash on hand. The Huffington Post is privately owned by its two cofounders, as well as a group of investors. The proposed transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of government approvals. The boards of directors of each company and shareholders of The Huffington Post have approved the transaction. The transaction is expected to close in the late first- or early second-quarter 2011.