The company’s CEO tweets a link to a news story about a sale. The one-time hugely popular website has struggled in recent years.
Seattle humor website Cheezburger has been sold to an undisclosed buyer, the company confirmed Monday.
Scott Moore, who took the CEO position after founder Ben Huh stepped down in July, tweeted a link to a Geekwire news article about the acquisition, saying, “I can has been acquired?”
The phrase is a nod to Cheezburger’s popular cat memes on its flagship I Can Has Cheezburger? site.
In an interview, Moore said the deal would close in a few days, and the name of the buyer would be public in a couple of weeks.
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He described the buyer as a privately held media company but said he had been asked not to disclose the name because the buyer is in the midst of other negotiations.
Cheezburger soared to about 100 employees at its peak in 2012, riding a $30 million funding round from investors, including Foundry Group and Madrona Venture Group.
But Cheezburger has struggled in recent years as online activity increasingly headed to mobile. The company has undergone several rounds of layoffs and now has about 14 employees.
Page views have declined sharply for Cheezburger, down to about 86.4 million in January, compared with about 467.5 million in January 2012, according to Quantcast.
When Moore joined the company in 2013, the company had 45 employees, but it had to cut its staff. The advantage of being bought by a larger company, he said, is the ability to scale up again.
“By doing this, we’re going to be in a much better position to scale up and get more advertisers,” he said.
The buyer has deep expertise in working with online advertisers, Moore said, something Cheezburger has struggled with.
The company raised its most recent round a year ago, a $2.74 million injection that brought its total to nearly $40 million.
Current employees have been cautioned against disclosing the buyer.