Ask.com Carrying IAC Through Tough Times?

Ask.com's strong performance is helping offset a rough quarter on parent IAC, driven largely by a troubled mortgage industry's impact on its real estate and lending businesses.

During a conference call yesterday, IAC officials said the company's media and advertising sector revenue -- which includes Ask.com and Citysearch --increased by 40 percent during the quarter. That segment's operating income before amortization was $27.6 million, about $12 million more than the year-ago period, reports ClickZ News.

During the call, COO Doug Lebda said the company's next move in search "is to rebuild and redeploy the infrastructure of the core search engine." Ask.com is in the midst of that rebuild now, he said, adding that the end result should yield “more relevant, more complete and fresher” search results.