YouTube Founders Acquire Delicious From Yahoo

Chen, Hurley Form New Company to Operate the Once-Loved Bookmarking Service

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Yahoo unloaded Delicious to YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen for an undisclosed sum. The acquisition marks a return for the two entrepreneurs who left YouTube not long after Google bought the company in 2006 for a hefty $1.76 billion. The partners formed a new company, Avos, which will own the bookmarking site.

Delicious allows users to tag websites with keywords, creating common bookmarks around the web. But the site had fallen out of favor with the recent rise of other social organizing tools such as Twitter and the ever-increasing versatility of Facebook. In 2008, the service claimed 5 million users.

"We're excited to work with this fantastic community and take Delicious to the next level," Mr. Hurley, CEO of Avos, said in a statement. The new owners will maintain and add to the service, according to the company statement. "We see a tremendous opportunity to simplify the way users save and share content they discover anywhere on the web," he said.

Yahoo bought Delicious in 2005 for a reported $15 million to $20 million, along with a slew of other startups such as Flickr, but the company has recently gone through rounds of layoffs as part of its strategy to unload ancillary products, including Delicious. Other services being put out to pasture include MyBlogLog, Altavista and Upcoming.

"As we have said, part of our product strategy involves shifting our investment with off-strategy products to put better focus on our core strengths and fund new innovation," Yahoo said in a statement.

Existing users of the service will have to agree to port over their bookmarks to the new owners, which will officially take control in July.

Though it's not clear what the overall strategy of Messrs. Chen and Hurley's new company will entail, the release said it will look to solve the problem of information overload. "We see this problem not just in the world of video, but also cutting across every information-intensive media type," Mr. Chen said.

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