Google has snapped up YouTube for $1.65bn (884m), just 19 months after the video-sharing website launched.
The deal brought a swift conclusion to talks that began only last week and has pre-empted a bidding war for the site, which Wall Street analysts believed would have involved Yahoo! and Disney, among other media companies.
Chad Hurley, YouTube chief executive and co-founder, comments: “By joining forces with Google, we can benefit from its global reach and technology leadership to deliver a more comprehensive entertainment experience for our users.”
Google expects to complete the deal by the end of the year.
YouTube has also reached an agreement to broadcast music videos with Universal Music, which had threatened to sue for copyright infringement, and Sony BMG.