For sometime Google and Facebook have been competing for online advertising revenue. On Thursday, Facebook has agreed to buy Atlas Solutions Unit from Microsoft to get the upper hand on Google.
Atlas Advertiser Suite is a media management and measurement platform which is part of an advertising service called aQuantive. Microsoft originally bought the system for $6.3 billion in 2007. The software company had high expectations for a large online ad revenue but ended up a failure as Microsoft had their first quarterly loss it’s 26 year history.
The financial details of the deal have yet to be announced but it’s safe to assume that Facebook didn’t pay much on the account of Microsofts shortcomings with the service. In a sense Facebook did Microsoft the favor of taking Atlas off their shoulders.
Facebook says their intentions are to use the measurement technology and suite of tools for advertisers on home and mobile devices. Forrester analyst Nate Elliott says in his blog that we’d expect Atlas to use Facebook’s data to target sponsorships, in stream ads and other formats in the future.
Marketers have already been using Atlas since June but as stated in the announcement by product marketing director, Brian Boland
"Many marketers that advertise on Facebook today use Atlas, and Atlas has been an approved partner for measurement since June. Today's agreement brings us closer together in a way that benefits both Facebook and Atlas' agency and marketer clients. Atlas clients should not see any change to the service they receive today, and we will continue to innovate and invest in the Atlas platform."
Microsoft believes that Facebook’s acquisition of Atlas will strengthen their existing partnership. Only time will tell if Facebook can overthrow Google’s market on display ads. According to eMarketer Google leads in online ad display with a 15 percent while Facebook follows with a 14.4 percent.