Sandy Brown at TheStreet.com has the latest rumor:
Time Warner entered talks with Google over a partnership with America Online, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Citing people close to the situation, the paper said Time Warner and Google “entered exclusive negotiations about deepening their advertising partnership, shutting out Microsoft.” The Journal said Google will pay $1 billion for a 5% stake in AOL. The paper said any deal “won’t likely be finalized until next week after Time Warner’s board meeting on Wednesday.”
A person familiar with the situation said talks between Microsoft and Time Warner had ended. Time Warner declined to comment, as did Google. Microsoft reps weren’t immediately reachable.
Developments in the AOL sweepstakes have been hard to figure out at times. For instance, Fiday’s news comes just 10 days after the Journal reported that Time Warner was near an agreement with Microsoft to develop an online-advertising service to compete with Google. The Journal noted Friday that Microsoft “has been wooing AOL since January.”
Related: Previous episode in this saga.