On Friday Microsoft purchased Razorfish webdesign company for 6 billion in cash. This is their largest acquisition ever, and it was done with cash not stock so this means they actually have to pay for it. I cant believe it, 6 billion dollars for a company that saw its fortunes mirror the internet craze of the late 1990’s and crash with all the other web companies in 2000.
Microsoft just wanted an outlet for Expression, their webdesign replacement for the horrid frontpage. With this purchase they can now force a leading web design company to use Expression and hope all of us follow suit. A good buy for 6,000,000,000?
Actually, the real reason Microsoft wanted to buy Razorfish web design is for their ad serving unit Aquantive. This is a defensive move from Google’s acquisition of Doubleclick, as Microsoft can’t stand not having the same toys as Google.
So for more money than God Microsoft has purchased an interactive banner ad program that they will use to control advertisers on their networks. Net income from Aquantive was $54 million last year, so it’s going to take a while to make money on this investment.