Associated Press May Wind Up Owning VeriSign's Moreover

This story was written by Staci D. Kramer.
VeriSign (NSDQ: VRSN) has had news search and delivery firm Moreover Technologies on the blocks for months, part of the company's to divest assets that don't fit with its current strategy. Moreover had plenty of serious suitors back in 2005, when VeriSign bought it for $30 millionwinning out over Google (NSDQ: GOOG), Reuters, Factiva (then a Reuters-DJ JV), and the Associated Press. Now it looks like the AP, which sued Moreover and VeriSign for copyright infringement last October, may wind up owning it after all: we've been told AP has signed a letter of intent to acquire Moreover.

The AP's official response from spokesman Paul Colford: "We don't respond to market rumors." VeriSign spokeswoman Lisa Malloy said, "We haven't made an announcement on a deal like that." She explained that VeriSign typically would make an announcement at the close of a deal.

The AP sued Moreover and VeriSign for copyright infringement last October. Actions in the case have been postponed numerous times; the latest extension was granted in March, calling for a filing by May 19 and a conference on June 24.

Price?: Hard to say. VeriSign recently sold Kontiki for $1 million and equity, a fraction of the original $62 million it paid for the CDN. 

By Staci D. Kramer