Microsoft wins Facebook bid? Here’s the insider scoop on why…

Last night I was hanging around at the Ritz near my house. That’s where Jerry Yang, CEO of Yahoo spoke yesterday, and where the Right Media conference is going on right now.

I talked with several people who didn’t want to go on the record, but who are executives at Microsoft’s competitors. They told me to “watch out for Brian McAndrews, former CEO of aQuantive.”

That’s the company that sold recently to Microsoft for a very large sum of money (around $6 billion).

They say he now is working for Kevin Johnson, president of Microsoft and is expected to make major moves on Microsoft’s behalf to get Microsoft a major position into the advertising industry.

So, what’s the rumor this morning? Microsoft wins the Facebook bid.

If this is all true, then Steve Ballmer’s promise to buy 50 companies in the advertising and Web 2.0 spaces in the next year is off to a roaring start.

Since I don’t think Steve Ballmer understands the advertising world, it sure looks like someone else is behind this move. I’d love to interview Brian McAndrews.

UPDATE: if this rumor is true, it means big revenues for Facebook. Microsoft has a world-class advertising sales team. I bet they could promise more revenues than Google could, particularly because Microsoft’s sales team is much more focused on banner advertising than Google’s team is.

UPDATE2: Microsoft’s Hank Vigil was in Palo Alto yesterday, so maybe he’s behind this. Me?

80 thoughts on “Microsoft wins Facebook bid? Here’s the insider scoop on why…

  1. Somebody had to step forward in validating the use of social networks for business, who better than MS.

    FB is already addressing .mobi, that is the key component. Encouragement of developers again is something that triggers MS interests. The fact a vehicle(FB), has a ridiculous number of users sends advertisers into WAR Rooms, an find a way to capitalize
    on it.

    What this investment/agreement/purchase does is lay value to the competitors. Is LinkedIn next?

  2. Somebody had to step forward in validating the use of social networks for business, who better than MS.

    FB is already addressing .mobi, that is the key component. Encouragement of developers again is something that triggers MS interests. The fact a vehicle(FB), has a ridiculous number of users sends advertisers into WAR Rooms, an find a way to capitalize
    on it.

    What this investment/agreement/purchase does is lay value to the competitors. Is LinkedIn next?

  3. I am relieved that Microsoft won this and not Google.

    This is good on so many levels it’s hard to really explain why in one or two sentences.

    Google “owns” too much of the Web for my liking. It’s nice when there is actual competition out there.

    I’ll tell you what. I’m looking forward to Microsoft’s Surface platform becoming available to the public. Talk about ads really taking off. Being able to sit in a hotel loby or a restaurant and actually interact with ads and programs like paying one’s bill is outstanding technology. The only drawback is that is might kill off some jobs.

  4. I am relieved that Microsoft won this and not Google.

    This is good on so many levels it’s hard to really explain why in one or two sentences.

    Google “owns” too much of the Web for my liking. It’s nice when there is actual competition out there.

    I’ll tell you what. I’m looking forward to Microsoft’s Surface platform becoming available to the public. Talk about ads really taking off. Being able to sit in a hotel loby or a restaurant and actually interact with ads and programs like paying one’s bill is outstanding technology. The only drawback is that is might kill off some jobs.

  5. Microsoft must view facebook as a programming language for the web, and wants to keep google away from screwing with that. But how powerful and flexible is the facebook api for integrating different software, and when did they start designing their api? :D:D

  6. Microsoft must view facebook as a programming language for the web, and wants to keep google away from screwing with that. But how powerful and flexible is the facebook api for integrating different software, and when did they start designing their api? :D:D

  7. M$ didn’t buy Fakebook.

    They just pissed in the pool so nobody else could swim.

    I would never do business with such unethical monopolist.

    Period!

  8. M$ didn’t buy Fakebook.

    They just pissed in the pool so nobody else could swim.

    I would never do business with such unethical monopolist.

    Period!

  9. Nothing against Microsoft but they have this tendency to pretty much f*** things up that they acquire and haven’t build themselves. Just hoping that the same thing doesn’t happen to facebook.

  10. Nothing against Microsoft but they have this tendency to pretty much f*** things up that they acquire and haven’t build themselves. Just hoping that the same thing doesn’t happen to facebook.

  11. Raoul,

    I don’t (continue to) use Facebook because journalists ‘talked it up’. I might _try_ it because journalists talked it up, but the ‘talking up’ is certainly not what is going to keep me there.

    How can you talk down the success of a product that is clearly being used by millions?

    Additionally [analogy alert!], I may not be too fussed with Madonna’s music – in fact I might even think that it is all crap – but there is no denying that she has made some excellent decisions and capitalised on them over the years, and I admire her for her initial and ongoing success.

    Regardless of how much “assistive (I love making up words) hype” Facebook may be getting from the press, they certainly deserve credit for keeping people there.

  12. Raoul,

    I don’t (continue to) use Facebook because journalists ‘talked it up’. I might _try_ it because journalists talked it up, but the ‘talking up’ is certainly not what is going to keep me there.

    How can you talk down the success of a product that is clearly being used by millions?

    Additionally [analogy alert!], I may not be too fussed with Madonna’s music – in fact I might even think that it is all crap – but there is no denying that she has made some excellent decisions and capitalised on them over the years, and I admire her for her initial and ongoing success.

    Regardless of how much “assistive (I love making up words) hype” Facebook may be getting from the press, they certainly deserve credit for keeping people there.

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