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Facebook Buys Ad Tech From Microsoft

It could signal a move to expand its advertising formats


Social media giant Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) is adding new technology to bolster is advertising efforts.

The company will pay an undisclosed amount to purchase advertising analytics and management platform Atlas Advertiser Suite from Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT). The suite was part of aQuantive, which Microsoft acquired for $6.3 billion in 2007, but whose value the software giant mostly wrote off its books last year, Reuters noted.

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Facebook is vying with Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) to attract online display ads. According to industry research firm eMarketer, Google has 15.4% of the $15 billion-a-year U.S. market for such ads, while Facebook has 14.4%.

One analyst noted that the acquisition of Atlas Advertiser suggested that Facebook was likely to expand its advertising to include new formats, but could face privacy concerns while trying to combine its user data with Atlas’ tools.

Last month, media reports indicated that Facebook was close to announcing deals with three marketing data collection firms to give advertisers more information to target online ads to its users.

Shares of Facebook fell fractionally in Friday morning trading.

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