Mashable bought by publisher Ziff Davis

New York (AFP) –


Struggling online news site Mashable is set to be bought by Ziff Davis, a subsidiary of tech company j2 Global, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The once-vaunted outlet, which was valued at $250 million less than two years ago, will be sold for less than $50 million according to Recode, which first reported the acquisition.

Mashable has been in trouble for several months after failing to live up to huge growth rates it had promised investors.

Much of the decline is attributable to Google and Facebook's growing chokehold on the online advertising market.

The existence of talks between the two parties was reported by the Wall Street Journal last month.

Recode reported that Ziff Davis plans to ax around 50 positions and refocus Mashable on technology, which was its niche before it branched out to other areas including politics and pop culture.

Ziff Davis is known for managing several highly specialized sites including AskMen, PCMag and IGN in its four core areas of technology, gaming, healthcare, and shopping.

Mashable's founder Pete Cashmore, who started the site as a blog in 2005 when he was 19, will remain at the company.