United Online: NetZero, Classmates.com and now FTD

FTD Group Inc., the second-largest online florist after 1-800-Flowers.com Inc., is being acquired by Internet company United Online Inc., the companies announced today.

Nasdaq: UNTD is a provider of consumer Internet and media services with over 50 million members. The company’s brands include Classmates.com and NetZero and Juno.

“This transaction will meaningfully diversify our revenue base within a large global market experiencing significant migration to the Internet,” said Mark R. Goldston, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of United Online. “Our proven expertise in implementing marketing initiatives to drive results should enable us to leverage the FTD brand and bring FTD products to United Online`s over 50 million consumer accounts. Further, we will explore opportunities to encourage repeat purchases of FTD products using reward programs based on our MyPoints loyalty marketing service.”

United Online will pay FTD shareholders $456 million in cash and stock. Assuming FTD’s debt will put the value of the deal at approximately $800 million.

By cross-pollinating (pun intended) FTD with its existing brands, United Online believes the combined businesses will have a rosy future.

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