Google to Buy FeedBurner, Source Says

Google has reached an agreement to buy RSS analytics firm and ad network FeedBurner, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told ClickZ News.

The deal would bring a major RSS feed management and measurement solution into Google’s product family, which already includes an RSS reader and a free Web site analytics product. FeedBurner manages about 700,000 feeds owned by 400,000 publishers, most of which use the platform to measure user interactions with their feeds and Web sites.

However, while only about 7,500 of those properties, or 1 percent of the firm’s total publishers, authorize FeedBurner to sell their ads in its ad network, those sites represent about 75 percent of its audience reach.

U.S. traffic to the FeedBurner site, which is mainly used by bloggers and other site owners to measure their stats, grew by 204 percent between April 2006 and April 2007, according to Hitwise. Traffic to Google’s RSS application, Google Reader, has climbed 290 percent in the past four months.

Rumors of the agreement have been floating for a number of weeks, but the companies are now in the final stages of the acquisition. Neither FeedBurner nor Google has yet publicly announced the sale, and neither could immediately be reached for comment.

The value of the deal has been pegged at around $100 million by Sam Sethi, who floated a rumor of the deal on his blog last week, and by TechCrunch, which ran an item about it today.

FeedBurner represents inventory both in feeds and on Web sites, and 90 percent of campaigns running on its network have used both types of ads. FeedBurner reports a 15 percent growth rate per month in the number of feeds it manages.

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