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August 8, 2006 at 12:11 PM

Loudeye acquired by Nokia

Seattle digital music company Loudeye is being acquired by Nokia in a $60 million cash deal. Loudeye’s shareholders will get $4.50 for each share. (Release is here).

It seems to be a fairly positive end for a company that has floundered for a while now. Loudeye was facing delisting by Nasdaq before it implemented a 1-for-10 reverse stock split, and even after that its share price continued to spiral.

Loudeye only has a handful of people in Seattle these days after selling its U.S. operations to Muze for a paltry $11 million. Given that amount, the $60 million from Nokia is fairly surprising.

Nokia is basically buying On Demand Distribution (OD2), the European company that Loudeye bought in 2004 for nearly $40 million.

Investors seem happy with today’s news. As of 12:20 p.m., Loudeye’s share price has shot up 145 percent to $4.33.

One commenter on Yahoo’s message board summed up the deal like this: “Big deal, a buy-out price equivalent to 45 cents a share pre-split. At least this brings the saga to an end.”

Update: Loudeye founder Martin Tobias gives his take on the sale in his blog.

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