Five years ago, Reader’s Digest Association gobbled up Seattle’s AllRecipes.com for about $66 million. Now, the publishing company is looking to sever the popular online Web site, selling it to the highest bidder.

The news, reported today by AdWeek, comes eight days after Reader’s Digest said that it plans to sell the magazine, “Every Day with Rachel Ray,” to Meredith for about $5 million.  AllRecipes is one of the biggest online recipe sites on the Internet, with the company claiming some 700 million annual visits and more than 24 million monthly unique visitors. Its mobile apps also are some of the most popular in the online cooking category, with more than 10 million downloads to date.

Earlier this year, The Wall Street Journal reported that AllRecipes.com could attract a price tag of as much as $100 million to $200 million.

Bill Moore, the former CEO of AllRecipes.com, now leads Seattle area mobile metrics startup RootMetrics. Lisa Sharples continues to serve as president of AllRecipes.com.

We’ve got a call into AllRecipes, which has maintained operations in downtown Seattle, and we’ll update the post as we hear more.

As I’ve noted in the past, Seattle has become a hotbed for online food and recipe sites. BigOvenFoodistaRecipeZaar and a new site from Christian Anderson, dubbed MyFaveRecipes.com, all call the Seattle area home.

UPDATE: Representatives at AllRecipes.com declined to comment, pointing to this press release by Reader’s Digest.

Reader’s Digest CEO Robert Guth said:

“The exploration of a sale of Allrecipes demonstrates our commitment to enhancing shareholder value and sharpening our strategic and financial focus on our core master brands, such as Reader’s Digest, Taste of Home and The Family Handyman. Allrecipes is a terrific business with an exceptional team, and impressive user growth over the last five years. We believe there will be strong interest in this category-leading asset.”

Meanwhile, Sharples added in the release:

“Allrecipes has thrived over the last six years under the RDA umbrella. We are excited about building on our significant success in expanding our user community to date and look forward to growing the Allrecipes brand with a new partner.”

Comments

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