HOT RUMOR: AOL to buy TechCrunch – in late stages

This just flashed up on GigaOM and must be placed strongly in the rumor column but Om Malik, who I have a great respect for, is reporting that while still at a delicate stage the deal that would see AOL acquire TechCrunch could see an announcement at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference happening in San Francisco right now.

The deal is at a sensitive stage and might fall apart, but I don’t think so. Sources familiar to both entities say that the announcement is likely to happen onstage at Disrupt, TechCrunch’s flagship conference currently under way in San Francisco.

AOL CEO Tim Armstrong is likely to make an appearance at the conference, and perhaps that is when the announcement is likely to be made. Michael Arrington was unreachable for comment. AOL has not returned my calls. I still don’t know the terms of the deal, but I will update the post accordingly.

Wow .. wouldn’t that be a hellva way to close out a conference, not to mention a nice pay day.