Then again: Microsoft at it again…

Microsoft as an advertising giant? Not beyond the bounds of possibility. I wonder how it goes, when one computer company has the largest share of computers, and the largest share of the advertising industry (hypothetical, of course… this purchase doesnt put them there… yet..)

Microsoft has taken a deep plunge into the online advertising business, paying $US6 billion ($A7.3 billion) in cash and a massive 85 per cent premium to snap up one of the last major players in the sector, aQuantive Inc.

The deal came just one day after another online ad company, 24/7 Real Media Inc, was acquired for $US649 million ($A789.39 million) by advertising conglomerate WPP Group PLC and is the clearest proof yet of the urgency that technology and media companies feel about getting a piece of the online advertising boom.

It is the largest acquisition in Microsoft’s history. The all-cash, $US66.50 ($A80.89) per share price represents an 85 per cent premium to aQuantive’s closing price on Thursday of $US35.87 ($A43.63).

Read the rest in the Sydney Morning Herald online.