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Microsoft Swaps With WPP


Everyone is talking about Microsoft looking to dump Avenue A/Razorfish. Matt report on it ages ago here. From AdAge here’s the latest:

“Almost six months after the companies started talking, WPP and Microsoft have reopened talks that could have the software company unloading Avenue A/Razorfish. But the question is whether Microsoft could ever get anyone to buy the digital ad agency for the price at which it needs to sell it.”

At the time of Microsoft’s purchase of mother company, aQuantive which included Avenue A, everyone in the ad business was well aware that the software giant wasn’t so interested in owning Razorfish. However, they went with it. They had just missed out on purchasing DoubleClick to Google and wanted to, needed to stay in the game. At any price and what a price they paid – $800M.

The word on the street is that Microsoft may make a swap rather than trying to make back its over-inflated purchasing price of Razorfish. WPP is apparently looking to off load Open AdStream, which they got lumped with when they purchased its mother company, 24/7 Real Media.

Adage speculates that Open AdStream will be swapped for what they say is the number two digital shop by revenue, Avenue A/Razorfish (see video above), plus some cash in some sort of corporate back water deal. That’s not such bad news for Avenue A. Remember? They lost out on receiving that lush Microsoft benefits package. Maybe they’ll get a better deal over at WPP.

If you are a Razorfish staffer, get in touch yeah? superspyin at gmail dot com

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