All Quiet On The DoubleClick Front... Or Not

from the war-games dept

Just last week, there was a flurry of news about how Microsoft and Google were in a bidding war for DoubleClick, the onetime leader in internet advertising. According to people that were apparently close to the situation (always to be taken with a grain of salt), Microsoft had put in a bid for the company, only to be outbid by Google. Since then, however, there's been no news at all on the situation. Larry Dignan throws out some interesting possibilities of what might be going on here. One scenario is that one of the parties has basically secured a deal, but there's still some details to be worked out. It's also possible that Google only feigned interest in DoubleClick so that it could get an inside look at its operations. Another likely situation is that Microsoft and Google are basically fighting a war of words. Instead of actually being interested in acquiring DoubleClick, the two sides might be throwing out feelers just to see how the other side responds. DoubleClick isn't nearly as important as it used to be, but it's still big enough that both companies may not want the other to get its hands on it. Of course, unfulfilled acquisition rumors are thrown out on a daily basis, so it remains possible that the story is completely groundless, in which case DoubleClick's private equity owners better hope that the company's plan to be the NASDAQ of internet advertising takes off. Update: It turns out that the deal has materialized, and Google is the winner. It's paying a whopping $3.1 billion for the company, making it by far the biggest acquisition in the company's history; that's nearly twice as much as it paid for YouTube.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    carlos barrientos, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 12:06pm

    Ad Exchange

    Double Click is working on an Advertising Marketplace where you auction off the ad space on a website to the highest bidder. Microsoft and Google lack this type of service to clients, and want to have a lead on it. eBay could be a good fit too, since it already operates an auction exchange. Better fit than Skyype for ebay.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Howard Lee Harkness, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 12:44pm

    Hosts file

    Since I added doubleclick (along with the URLs of a couple of dozen other crap spewers) to my hosts file to prevent anything they stick into a website from loading, I've noticed that page loads are MUCH faster
    Violins and Accessories

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Erstazi, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 2:03pm

    Re: Hosts file

    If the basic user knew how to edit the HOST file (either Windows or *nux [I suspect that most *nix users know how to edit a host file]), there wouldn't be much left to the internet advertising business. Some sites, like myspace (poor example), rely on ads. Personally, my HOST file is well used. Even before, I never clicked ads and I don't see how majority of the people out there would really click ads.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 2:16pm

    Selling Internet advertising is like owning a toll booth that has a well-known shortcut around it. You might make a few bucks off the idiots, but you don't really have much of a business.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Tony, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 2:42pm

    Spoke too soon!

    DoubleClick goes to Google for $3.1 Billion!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    techdirtReader, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 3:13pm

    Purchasing evil for $3.1 billion

    What does a do-no-evil company (don't laugh) do after purchasing a company that specializes in evil?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Mike Andersen, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 4:01pm

    Re: Purchasing evil for $3.1 billion

    I have faith that Google can turn it around, put new senior management in place that will enable it to keep a majority of it's prime customers and loose some of the dead weight that gives DoubleClick it's negative image. Besides, they have offices in Colorado, Illinois, and New York that will probably be migrated to the MountainView campus... That's a lot of people who may have to relocate, or be replaced with senior staff at Google.

    Take heed to the 80/20 rule- I imagine 20% of the accounts make up 80% of DoubleClick's negative reputation.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 13th, 2007 @ 7:24pm

    Re: Re: Purchasing evil for $3.1 billion

    But Google has offices in Colorado (Sketchup) and a big one in New York...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    ♦♦♦ Search Engine WEB ♦ , Apr 13th, 2007 @ 10:53pm

    Microsoft was to buy Claria a few Years Ago

    Remember that controversy surrounding Microsoft's plans to buy Claria

    It will be interesting to see WHAT Yahoo does in response to stay competative - and what MSN will do?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    MIKE, Apr 14th, 2007 @ 3:54am

    Most evil ba******s on the planet

    Apart from the RIAA Double click are evil but you cant kill it the devil would lose his job. They are the responsible for 1/2 of the malware spyware that attempts to reach my computers which I am pleased to say gets droped before it can do damage. Whats Goooooogle want with them?????

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. icon
    Vincent Clement (profile), Apr 14th, 2007 @ 6:06am

    Re: Most evil ba******s on the planet

    Please explain how DoubleClick is responsible for "1/2 of the malware spyware" attempts on your computers? There are DoubleClick banner ads on Techdirt and I have yet to experience any attempts of malware spyware to reach my computer.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 14th, 2007 @ 8:12am

    Erstazi, re editing your hosts file - an internet company as big as Google owns millions of IP addresses. It would be easy to build a system where each ad served comes from a different IP. You could surf for a lifetime and every ad you see could come from a different 'place'. Ad blocking is a temporary solution and won't work for long. Would you rather PAY for all this great content???

    So Google went ahead and bought doubleclick?!? How did a techdirt reader know at 2:42pm???!!! Different Timezones?

    Will it be or ?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. identicon
    Charles Griswold, Apr 14th, 2007 @ 12:48pm

    Re: Re: Most evil ba******s on the planet

    There are DoubleClick banner ads on Techdirt [. . .]
    I just looked at this page using a browser that doesn't have Adblock Plus, and hey, you're right! I just never saw them before. :-)

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. identicon
    just me, May 4th, 2007 @ 7:40pm


    doubleclick ads on TechDirt! I never knew that either. I have no intentions of letting my guard down here, just to see one. Those oh so poor souls that don't know how to block em... hmm...

    *Just Me gives all those poor souls a cookie.*

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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