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Microsoft Buyout aQuantive Gets Clearence

Microsoft Corp.’s $6 billion acquisition of online advertising group aQuantive Inc. has cleared an antitrust regulatory hurdle, the companies said Friday.

The Federal Trade Commission mandates a waiting period to review anticompetitive fallout from large mergers. In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Friday, aQuantive said the waiting period passed without requests for further information from the FTC.

“We’re obviously pleased,” said Tom Phillips, a spokesman for Seattle-based aQuantive. A shareholder meeting to vote on the sale of the company is scheduled for Aug. 9.

Phillips said aQuantive is still working out how the organization, which employs 2,560 people worldwide, with 662 in Seattle, will look after the buyout.

Microsoft’s Live search engine lags far behind sites operated by Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc., in the number of searches performed each month. As a result, the company racks up far fewer dollars from the small text ads placed next to search results.

Microsoft’s acquisition of aQuantive, announced in May, followed Google’s announcement that it would pay $3.1 billion for online ad technology company DoubleClick Inc. Microsoft was reportedly interested in DoubleClick as well; aQuantive’s ad-serving technology could help the Redmond-based software maker close the gap with Google.

Microsoft shares slipped 28 cents to $29.72 in midday trading, while aQuantive shares jumped 88 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $65.75.

Source:? Yahoo News

Microsoft, aQuantive, Acquisition, Deal, Oline Advertising

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