IAC Shutting Down Ask.com Search Operations, Focusing On Q&A Service
IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IACI) is shutting down the search operations for Ask.com. Ask.com was acquired by IAC for $1.85 billion in July 2005. About 130 engineering jobs will be cut and 20 engineers currently working in New Jersey will be asked to move to Oakland. With a 65% market share of all U.S. searches, Google is simply too big of a company to compete with.
“It’s become this huge juggernaut of a company that we really thought we could compete against by innovating,” stated Ask.com President Doug Leeds. “We did a great job of holding our market share but it wasn’t enough to grow the way IAC had hoped we would grow when it bought us.”
Ask.com will still have a search box on their homepage, but the search will be powered by one of their competitors. Supposedly Ask.com will focus primarily on their toolbar and Q&A business going forward.