AOL (NYSE: AOL) spent just under $100 million to pick up 5min, Thing Labs and TechCrunch in its last-minute Q3 spending spree — and two-thirds of that went to the video site. The price tag for 5min was $64.7 million; the other two were lumped together in the company’s 10-Q at $32.4 million. But the total could wind up at $120 million.
AOL also said it has committed to up $23.1 million in payouts to execs of the three companies over the next three years. The filing doesn’t mention performance clauses, only that the payouts are “contingent on their future service to AOL.” The odds that everyone from the startups who is part of that group will stay long enough to earn it all aren’t great but it could happen.
That puts the total potential price of the three at just over $120 million. The prices reported in the AOL 10-Q are all net of cash.
How does this track with the reports at the time? Louis Gray, who first reported the Thing Labs acquisition, put that deal at $18 million with earnouts that would take it near $30 million. TechCrunch was variously reported in the $30 million range. If Gray is right about the initial payment for Thing Labs and its Brizzly social media, that would put the cash for TechCrunch around $14 million. Peter Kafka wins one dart game with a report that the price for 5min was near the top of a $50-65 million range.