Yahoo! must really hate Microsoft

14 June, 2008

Well, as we all know Yahoo! and Google announced a new deal around paid search yesterday. Lots and lots of coverage and analysis on TechCrunch, here and here, and SAI here. What strikes us at AdViking late on a warm weekend afternoon is that if you dig into the deal [read this one!] it really looks like the CEO and other senior executives at Yahoo must really hate Microsoft. You might even think they look pretty desperate and we are not talking about desperate house wives (that at least would be fun to watch).

Don’t get me wrong, we are fans of Yahoo and I’ve been using the site for more than a decade. But if this deal isn’t letting the fox right into the hen house then there is obviously things we’re not bale to see from up here in the land of the viking. I guess we can look at this as the end of web 1.0 and the day Yahoo as they become essentially an affiliate to Google (much like AOL). We also think there must be a host of legal and regulatory problems that lie ahead for G and Y.

Now the really interesting thing is what will other big publishers and content owners do? And is this day that a new online advertising war started?

We need to go back to the fort for awhile to ponder this but in the meantime we are going to re-read the Blog Maverick’s post on one way possible to beat Google and also think some more about how great brands (both advertiser and publisher) like to work together (we’ll start be re-reading some post such as this one from JB – The Rise of Independent Media Brands Online). Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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Microhoo or is it YahAOL?

10 April, 2008

It’s heating up to end game as there’s plenty of moves on the potential purchase of Yahoo! by Microsoft.

To AdViking the way Yahoo is going about it is a reminder of Wargames and at this point Jerry Yang is making sure that no-one will win, especially his shareholders which they can’t be happy about.

The big three moves are:

  1. WSJ reports that Time Warner and Yahoo are close to making a deal for AOL (minus the access business) to join Yahoo
  2. Yahoo have announced they are going to run a two week trial to run AdSense ads
  3. New York Times reports that News Corp. may have flopped over to joining the Microsoft bid

AdViking thinks the last one as being the most interesting. If you have a combined Yahoo, News Corp and Microsoft then you have a truly viable alternative to Google in the digital ad space and this then creates opportunities through out the digital advertising ecosystem. e.g.: for technologies like OpenX; indy ad networks like adconion; or indy publisher networks like Federated Media.


Microsoft Buys Rapt – cool ad technology

19 March, 2008

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Last Friday Microsoft announced that it is buying ad technology firm Rapt – here’s the official PR on the deal. This looks like a very strategic and smart buy that will bolster Microsoft’s APS offering in the optimization and sales tool area. Rapt looks like a great tool to help with online display for big publishers… Rapt has an impressive rooster of top teir customers including: MSN, Yahoo, Fox Interactive, NCB, CNET and Dow Jones. This post on Yankee Group helps explain why they are buying Rapt and here is the TC post.


Microhoo – Wall Street Poll & They Meet

18 March, 2008

A couple of interesting items about the proposed deal by Microsoft to acquire Yahoo! came out over the last couple of days.

Analysts Give the Thumbs Up to the deal

Reuters provided details on a poll they ran against the Wall Street analysts who cover Microsoft and Yahoo! Some breakout of the numbers given:

  • 28 of the 30 respondents say the deal will be done
  • 1 of the nay, holds out hopes for AOL
  • 1 of the nay, thinks it will be blocked by regulators
  • 14 expect MSFT to close the deal at the initial offer
  • 4 expect MSFT to convert the deal to all cash
  • 12 expect MSFT to raise the price between 413.50 & $35 per share

The full story was in the iht on Sunday.

Exec Meet & Greet

WSJ and others have reported that on Monday, Senior Execs from Microsoft and Yahoo! met so that Microsoft could outline what the vision for what a post-merger entity would look like. The agenda for the meeting was similar to those that Yahoo! held with AOL and News Corp. What’s interesting is that this is the first time the companies have spent some face time together since the unsolicited bid was announced.

Is Yahoo! being tactical by playing nice before Ballmer gets hostile ahead of the Yahoo! board meeting or is Jerry Yang realising that in the face of a hardening economy, he should probably shake hands on this one before it’s too late.


AOL Purchases Bebo

17 March, 2008

On the back of the SXSW Mark Zuckerberg interview and the interesting macro movements around the future of social media advertising, it seems that Time Warner provides further validation to these trends and have acquired, considered by many the #3 player, Bebo for AOL.

AdViking’s early take is that by adding the additional platform and traffic to what they have all ready, AOL has some very interesting pieces in play and with their Platform A advertising stable they have a unique opportunity to be at the forefront of what happens next. Especially, if we consider that Zuckerberg considers that the solution to social media advertising isn’t going to be found in the next couple of years but decades.

The coverage has ranged from: