AdBrite, AVN kiss and make up over porn

Philip Kaplan seems to have patched things up with AVN, the porn-industry trade publisher with which his company, AdBrite, runs an online ad network for adult websites. Earlier this month, AVN had abruptly yanked the AdBrite-run version of AVNAds.com offline and replaced it with its own hastily-built site for selling ads. In response, insiders said, Kaplan was readying to launch BlackLabelAds.com, AdBrite's own porn-ad network. Now, however, the AdBrite-run version of the network is back online. The spat however, came with a heavy financial price.

Rumors reaching Valleywag from adult-industry sources indicate that Lehman Brothers was weighing a large investment in AdBrite — as much as 10 percent of the company — but decided to pass. That's a heavy blow for both AdBrite and its lead VC investor, Sequoia Capital, which frequently partners with Lehman. The reason for Lehman's cold feet? Apparently, AdBrite's involvement in the porn business was larger than bankers there had been led to believe — a fact that may have been uncovered during AdBrite's recent audit.