DST to Take ICQ Off AOL’s Hands for $187.5M

AOL (s AOL) is finally offloading ICQ, to a newly familiar name in the tech investing space, Digital Sky Technologies. It’s actually a good regional fit as ICQ is the leading instant messaging service in Russia, where DST is based. DST has agreed to pay $187.5 million, which in the grand scheme of things is not too shabby — back in another era, AOL bought ICQ for $407 million in 1998. However, in December it had been reported that DST would buy ICQ for $200-$250 million.
ICQ has been on the block for a while. Though using ICQ may be a long-lost memory U.S. Internet users, the IM service has 32 million uniques per month, with significant presence in Eastern Europe. That dates back to ICQ’s roots in Israel, where it was created in 1996 by Mirabilis.
AOL, which is still looking to offload its social networking acquisition Bebo, reported a 58 percent decline in first-quarter profits today.