Rumors are abounding that eBay is looking to offload Skype and Google would be only to happy to step in. New information, however, suggests that they are in current talks and that a partnership or outright acquisition may be announced in the near future.
Skype, acquired in late 2005 for $3.1 billion, has been a financial albatross around Ebay’s neck. eBay removed Skype co-founder and CEO Niklas Zennstrom in October 2007, reportedly due to frustration at the financial performance of Skype. Ebay also negotiated down the huge earnout due to Skype stockholders and took a $936 million one-time loss around the transaction.
Details are scant and the Techcrunch is reporting that Skype is keeping schtum and not talking to journalists about the rumours at the CTIA Wireless Conference in Las Vegas.
Google has already launched a VoIP service though GTalk, which is a free 411 service and GrandCentral, a telephone management service it acquired last year for $50 million.