Print 21 comment(s) - last by Ravenlore.. on May 21 at 12:23 PM

Microsoft picks up an internet ad firm for a hefty sum

 Microsoft Corp. announced today it will acquire aQuantive, Inc. for $6 billion, roughly $66.50 per share in an all cash transaction.  This will be the largest purchase the software giant has ever made, spending roughly three times as much money as it has on any other company.  The company’s goal is to provide the advertising industry with an internet-wide advertising platform and a set of tools and services that help its constituents bring in the highest possible return.

The acquisition of aQuantive will allow Microsoft to build and strengthen its relationships with advertisers, agencies, and publishers.  It will also help the software giant build and support next generation advertising solutions and environments such as cross media planning, video-on-demand and IPTV.  The combined technologies and portfolio provide for constituencies as follows:
  • Advertisers and ad agencies will benefit from a world-class media planning, buying and campaign management solution to drive maximum ROI and optimize their reach to audiences across the increasingly fragmented, interactive media landscape.

  • Media owners/publishers will gain access to best-in-class inventory optimization and monetization solutions across a full suite of rich media, video and targeting capabilities.

  • The broader advertising ecosystem will benefit from the leading interactive advertising agency, Avenue A | Razorfish, continuing to serve its impressive client roster, while also embedding the voice of the marketer into Microsoft’s next generation advertising solutions and services
"The announcement represents the next step in the evolution of our ad network from our initial investment in MSN, to the broader Microsoft network including Xbox Live, Windows Live and Office Live, and now to the full capacity of the Internet. Microsoft is intensely committed to creating a thriving advertising business and to partnering closely with all key constituencies in this industry to help maximize the digital advertising opportunity for all.” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer of Microsoft.

The deal is expected to be completed in the first half of Microsoft's fiscal year 2008.  The acquisition is not expected to have a significant impact on the financial guidance issued by the company.  aQuantive will continue to operate out of Seattle as part of Microsoft's Online Service Business.

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Fighting Google?
By Newspapercrane on 5/19/2007 10:58:03 AM , Rating: 2
Could this be a move by Microsoft to counter all of Google's advertisement investments, or even break into the market? Google apparently makes A LOT on advertisements, and maybe Microsoft wants a piece.

RE: Fighting Google?
By phatboye on 5/19/2007 12:00:14 PM , Rating: 5
Duh :O

RE: Fighting Google?
By Armorize on 5/19/07, Rating: -1
RE: Fighting Google?
By FITCamaro on 5/20/2007 9:13:45 AM , Rating: 2
Funny considering

1) Microsoft's internet browsers don't have ads.
2) IE7 does just as good a job at blocking ads as Firefox.

I see Microsoft bashing has gotten to the point where people blame Microsoft for web sites putting ads on their pages.

And I say this from a Firefox 2.0 browser.

RE: Fighting Google?
By Vinnybcfc on 5/20/2007 2:26:53 PM , Rating: 3
Drugs are bad mmmkay?

Seriously do you really think you make any sense by spelling MS as M$ it is childish at best, just like the idiots who spell Sony as $0ny, yeah you look really leet.

And why would Microsoft want to put ads into IE8 just to drive people away to Opera or Firefox?

A Google OS would be based on Linux and wouldn't be able to run any of your Win programs anyway so you wouldn't use it.

I hope this won't lead to in-Word advert
By borowki on 5/19/2007 6:48:56 AM , Rating: 3
A new role for Clippy...

By johnadams on 5/19/2007 8:55:47 AM , Rating: 3
Haha! Or the search doggy.

RE: I hope this won't lead to in-Word advert
By oTAL on 5/21/2007 11:03:08 AM , Rating: 1
hrm!!! *Shivers*
Lets just hope we never see that little asshole again! The guy who invented Clippy should have a 2 metter Clippy shoved up his ass!

By oTAL on 5/21/2007 11:06:40 AM , Rating: 2

Guess that one guy that likes Clippy reads DT. =P

What about Yahoo! ?
By maroon1 on 5/19/2007 1:41:07 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't Microsoft plan to buy Yahoo as well ?

RE: What about Yahoo! ?
By HrilL on 5/19/2007 1:55:56 PM , Rating: 2
Last thin I read they had something like 36 Billion in cash in the bank. For the yahoo deal it was something like 50 Billion but yeah I heard that too. I think they are still in talks about it. But if they did that they might have 1 upped Google.

RE: What about Yahoo! ?
By Scrogneugneu on 5/19/2007 9:45:12 PM , Rating: 2
I kinda recall hearing that Microsoft wanted to build from in-house development now instead of buying out products.

I wonder how buying an advertisement company and Yahoo is connecting to that new ideal...

RE: What about Yahoo! ?
By TSS on 5/20/2007 6:02:07 AM , Rating: 2
i thought i read somewhere that those rumors had been proven false, about buying yahoo. ohwell they will surely buy this compagny.

and the awnser to your question is simple: time. im sure they want to develop their own stuff and bring it online, but since google has purchased doubleclick they just dont have time to develop something similar on their own.

the question is more like why would microsoft offer a price 85% higher then the stock price? could it be to avoid alot of hassle like "i wanna buy" "we want more money" "we'll give you more money" "no we mean MORE money", or is it desperation and just outbid the competition instantly?

By Webgod on 5/19/2007 5:12:02 PM , Rating: 2
$6 Billion sounds overpriced considering Internet advertising doesn't work all that well. Google is different because it's a search engine and you're clearly looking for something when you visit. Ad banners, related links, intellitext annoying double underlines - those distract me.

The only thing I've seen interesting lately as far as Internet advertising is where Google has stuck a YouTube style streamed TV ad on a page that you can choose to watch if you click on it.

Obviously they're making a buy in order to make more profit - a buy that will pay for itself, but it sure seems overpriced.

RE: $6B
By Emily on 5/21/2007 7:52:31 AM , Rating: 2
Despite not being Google, the company has managed to grow gradually in 2005. And I am sure Microsoft did some thorough research before the purchase.

Either way, aQuantive shareholders have something to celebrate about. The stock price almost doubled!

The masses and abuse
By Ravenlore on 5/21/07, Rating: 0
Let me go to the ATM
By UppityMatt on 5/19/07, Rating: -1
RE: Let me go to the ATM
By Slappi on 5/19/2007 8:58:56 AM , Rating: 5
Let's see.... I just spent $70 to fill up my car this week. Next week I'll spend the same. My Windows Vista Home Premium cost me about $115 shipped and I'll be using it for the next 3-5 years.

Hell I went to dinner last night with my wife at the Outback and it was $60.

When you can buy a whole computer with monitor for under $500 and it comes with XP or Vista you aren't getting ripped off. If you think you are then everything you buy in your life must be a ripoff.

Yah Microsoft is really ripping us off.

Go buy an Apple computer that's cheap (sarcasm) or better yet go use Linux it's FREE!

Oh and one more thing........ STOP BITCHING!

RE: Let me go to the ATM
By phatboye on 5/19/07, Rating: 0
RE: Let me go to the ATM
By phatboye on 5/19/2007 9:38:43 AM , Rating: 2
When you can buy a whole computer with monitor for under $500 and it comes with XP or Vista you aren't getting ripped off.

It is a ripoff when you figure that 1/5th of that goes directly to ms while the rest of that money is spread out for the hardware, software and tech support. ms takes a really hefty chunk out of the pie.

RE: Let me go to the ATM
By Treckin on 5/19/2007 6:09:02 PM , Rating: 4
Jesus, save us all. Or just the whiners.
Are you seriously saying that 200 bucks for an OS is a ripoff? He had a totally valid point; One spends more than that on expendable goods possibly in one day. He wasnt directly comparing the prices of Windows ot the price of gasoline. He was stating that if you spend 200 dollars at safeway EVERY WEEK, for the next 3-5 years (approximatly $40,000 for 4 years), how is it hard to justfy spending $250 on a one time investment for that same timeframe?

What in gods name do you care what MS does with the money after they have it? If you recieved a quality product (debateable, sure), with excellent customer support (not debateable, esp for developers), what is there to gripe about? Why not go on the United Food Workers forum and tell them to start offering food that, after an initial investment of $200, doesnt run out for 3-5 years. And tell them to offer free updates as better genetically engineered corn comes out... And to have a hotline when you get food poisening... (I may have taken that to far :-) )

And to the comment above "apparently google makes a lot of money on internet adverising..."
Try its there only sourse of income. And if internet advertising wasnt effective, why is it everywhere you look? Its massivly effective. Thats why MS bought it... duh

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007

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