John Plunkett, guardian.co.uk
CNN is on the verge of buying social media news website Mashable for “upwards of $200m”, according to reports.
The global news network, which is owned by Time Warner, is said to be in advanced talks to acquire the site which was founded by Scottish-born Pete Cashmore in 2005.
Reuters blogger Felix Salmon, reporting from the South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas, said the sale could be announced as early as Tuesday in a deal worth more than $200m (£128m).
The New York Times reported on Monday that the two companies were in advanced talks.
Mashable made its name covering social media and technology news, but has expanded its brief to cover business and entertainment.
It has already secured tie-ups with a number of mainstream news sites, with CNN’s technology site carrying headlines from Mashable and a column penned by Cashmore.
It is just over a year since AOL spent $315m buying the Huffington Post in February 2011.
With offices in New York and San Francisco, Mashable has more than 20 million unique monthly visitors.
Its global syndication partners also include ABC News and Yahoo!.
CNN bought Zite, the technology company behind a personalised iPad news aggregator, in August last year. The deal was said to be worth between $20m and $25m.
Born in Banchory near Aberdeen, Cashmore founded Mashable after dropping out of college aged 19.
He has said the internet appealed because it was “something I could do in bed and feel like I was achieving something”.
• To contact the MediaGuardian news desk email email@example.com or phone 020 3353 3857. For all other inquiries please call the main Guardian switchboard on 020 3353 2000. If you are writing a comment for publication, please mark clearly “for publication”.
guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media 2012
(Mashable founder and CEO Pete Cashmore by Richard Moross via Flickr)