ValueClick Jumps On Renewed Takeover Rumors

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Includes: CNVR, TWX
by: Eric Savitz

Apparently, Tuesday was the day to recycle old takeover rumors. ValueClick (VCLK) shares are sharply higher on the latest round of speculation that the Internet advertising company could be a takeover target. The Associated Press quotes an analyst saying that he has heard that Time Warner’s (NYSE:TWX) AOL unit might be interested in the company - but then goes on to downplay the idea.

Clayton Moran, an analyst with Stanford Group, wrote Tuesday morning that the rumors actually started heating up Monday, and likewise noted Time Warner as the supposed buyer. Moran is skeptical as well, and points out that AOL already owns Advertising.com, the largest online ad network. Moran writes that Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) might be a more logical buyer; he notes that before MSFT agreed to acquire aQuantive for $6 billion, aQuantive had been in talks to buy VCLK.

Other potential VCLK buyers, he says include Yahoo (YHOO), News Corp. (NASDAQ:NWS) [which before long will own Barron’s thanks to its soon-to-be-completed acquisition of Dow Jones (DJ)] and “traditional advertising agencies.”

VCLK 1-yr chart: