IAC buys Q&A site Ask.fm

InterActiveCorp's (IACI +1.2%) Ask.com unit has acquired popular Q&A site/social network Ask.fm for an undisclosed sum.

Ask.fm has grown like wildfire over the last two years, and now claims 180M monthly unique users. It competes to an extent against fellow Q&A sites such as Quora and Yahoo Answers, but its base is more skewed towards teens. The site handles ~20K questions/minute, and its mobile apps have seen 40M+ downloads.

As part of the deal, Ask.fm's founders will be leaving the company, and IAC will be working with New York and Maryland's attorneys general to help Ask.fm "implement a set of best practices focused on increasing the safety of its services." The site has been criticized for failing to do enough to prevent bullying and harassment.

The purchase follows IAC's July acquisitions of The Princeton Review and HowAboutWe.

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