Facebook Pays Microsoft $550 Million for AOL Patents
Facebook will pay Microsoft Corp $550 million in cash for hundreds of patents recently sold by AOL, the social networking company’s latest move to bulk up its intellectual property in the wake of a lawsuit filed by Yahoo.
The deal, shortly before Facebook is expected to have the largest initial public offering in Silicon Valley history, will give the social network 650 patents and patent applications, as well as a license to another 275 patents and applications owned by Microsoft.
Microsoft trumped Amazon, eBay and other tech giants earlier this month with its more than $1 billion purchase of most of AOL Inc. patent trove.
Valuing patents is a complex process, and it was not immediately clear whether Microsoft profited from the deal with Facebook.
Brad Smith, Microsoft’s General Counsel, said in a prepared statement on Monday that the Facebook deal allows it “to recoup over half of our costs while achieving our goals from the AOL auction.”