The intention was announced a few weeks ago, now its a fact. As the pressrelease highlights its a very strategic move to position both Faceboook and Microsoft better to take advantage of advertising opportunities.
… Two companies expand advertising deal to cover international markets, Microsoft to take equity stake in Facebook.
Facebook and Microsoft Corp. today announced that the two companies would expand their advertising partnership and that Microsoft will take a $240 million equity stake in Facebook’s next round of financing at a $15 billion valuation. Under the expanded strategic alliance, Microsoft will be the exclusive third-party advertising platform partner for Facebook, and will begin to sell advertising for Facebook internationally in addition to the United States.
“We are pleased to take our Microsoft partnership to the next level,” said Owen Van Natta, Chief Revenue Officer, Facebook. “We think this expanded relationship will allow Facebook to continue to innovate and grow as a technology leader and major player in social computing, as well as bring relevant advertising to nearly 50 million active users of Facebook.”
“Making this investment and expanding this partnership will position Microsoft and Facebook to better take advantage of advertising opportunities around the world, and is a great win for not only for our two companies, but also our collective users and advertisers,” said Kevin Johnson, president of the Platforms & Services Division at Microsoft. “We have partnered well over the past year and look forward to doing some exciting things together in the future. The opportunity to further collaborate as advertising partners is a big reason we have decided to take an equity stake, and is a strong statement of our confidence in the long-term economics of this partnership.”
Facebook continues to experience strong growth both in the U.S. and international markets; almost 60 percent of Facebook’s users are outside the U.S. With an average of 200,000 new users registering each day, Facebook continues to be one of the most-trafficked sites on the Internet. …
Source: Facebook and Microsoft Expand Strategic Alliance
Date Published: Wed, 24 Oct 2007
Mary Jo Foley aparently was surprised that Microsoft beat Google to it with this deal. As she writes on her blog Robert Scoble gave his view on things: Brian McAndrews made it happen :
… Former Microsoft employee Robert Scoble says he hears Microsoft’s Facebook win is attributable the new guy on Microsoft’s ad team: Brian McAndrews, the former CEO of aQuantive, who is now the Senior VP in charge of Advertiser and Publisher Solutions. If Scoble is right, I wonder what other miracles McAndrews might be able to conjure, going forward. …
Source: All About Microsoft