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GigaOM and paidContent: Going Global

GigaOM, which announced its purchase of ContentNext Media yesterday, reportedly paid less than the $6.5 million Guardian News & Media spent on its 2008 acquisition of the company. The terms of the deal are undisclosed, but GigaOM is acquiring its flagship brand, paidContent, along with its other assets: mocoNews.net, contentSutra.com, and paidContent:UK.

Guardian News & Media, publisher of its namesake U.K. newspaper, will become a minority shareholder in GigaOM. They will also be sending a representative to join the board as an observer. The move comes as both companies are focusing on international expansion: the Guardian on its U.S. operations and GigaOM on expansion in the U.S. and into Europe.   The Guardian’s previous expansion efforts included the website GuardianAmerica.com, which launched in 2007 and folded in 2009. Its newest expansion efforts are under the domain GuardianNews.com. The company is trying to build off of its large U.S. audience—its biggest readership outside the U.K. Last spring, a handful of senior staff was relocated to New York.

Buying paidContent is also a strategic decision on the part of GigaOM to expand eastward and into Europe. In his blog post about the decision, founder Om Malik says that “New York is fast becoming a major technology hub,” and that paidContent’s New York offices would now be dubbed “GigaOM East.” In an interview with Wired, GigaOM CEO Paul Walborsky said, “Technology and covering technology is a global endeavor, and you need to be in all the major centers,” foreshadowing an increase in global expansion on the part of new media operations and those that cover them.

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