Microsoft’s aQuantive Buy Moving Forward

Microsoft’s $6 billion
purchase
of online ad company aQuantive is moving closer to completion,
having just cleared an antitrust regulatory hurdle.

Under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, companies
proposing to merge have to give regulators up to 30 days to scrutinize the
deal. Microsoft  said the 30-day period has expired
without a request by regulators for further information.

“We’re pleased the 30-day review period concluded without a second
request,” Microsoft spokesman Guy Esnouf told internetnews.com. “We
now think the transaction will be concluded by the end of the year if not
considerably sooner.”

He noted Microsoft is also waiting for the approval of
certain regulatory bodies in other countries, but does not anticipate any
delays with those either.

aQuantive has seen significant growth in the decade since its inception,
evolving to include three main brands: Atlas, which makes the Media Console
advertising platform; DRIVEpm, which provides ad services that match
advertiser campaigns with publisher inventory; and Avenue A | Razorfish,
which, as one of the largest online ad agencies in the world, provides
advertisers digital marketing consultation along with media planning and
buying.

When the acquisition was announced back in May, Microsoft said it plans
to use the aQuantive assets to create next-generation advertising systems,
including cross media planning, video-on-demand and IPTV. aQuantive, a
long-time customer and supplier of Microsoft, will continue to operate from
its Seattle headquarters as part of Microsoft’s Online Services Business.

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