Is Social Network Bebo ready to be sold?

Venturebeat has learnt that Bebo, one of the bigger social networks out there, has hired a bank to help it secure a sale to the highest bidder.

Bebo declined to comment on the rumour, but Venturebeat's deep throat confirmed that the current favourite is the "merger and acquisition department of a large internet company"; that could be anything from AOL to News.corp.

Yahoo was also apparently interested in the social network since the search giant doesn't have a social network of its own, all for a princely sum of USD 1 billion.

Myspace could also be interested because Rupert Murdoch might still want to strenghen MySpace and at the same time, eliminate the competition.

Social Networking market is likely to consolidate further as a looming recession in 2008 causes some to try to cash in and before the bubble bursts; potential acquisitions include Friendster, Linkedin and Hi5.