Rumor: Publicis Acquiring Razorfish From Microsoft

Posted Aug 9, 2009

Publicis Groupe SA is a French advertising company.  This morning a person familiar with the transaction told the WSJ that Publicis will acquire Microsoft subsidiary Razorfish.  Publicis is seeking ways to make additional revenue from advertising on the Internet.  The deal is expected to be announced sometime today.

Microsoft was rumored to be in talks for selling Razorfish to WPP PLC, Omnicom Group Inc., and Dentsu in the last few weeks.  The acquisition price is rumored to be somewhere around $500 and $600 million.  Last week Omnicom made a $500 million bid for Razorfish according to a WSJ source.

Aside from the purchase price, one of the additional components of the transaction that Publicis agreed to is to buy advertising space over the next several years on Microsoft’s online properties such as Bing.

Microsoft has been reportedly searching for a buyer of Razorfish over the last year.  Razorfish was the subsidiary of aQuantive, which Microsoft bought out for $6 billion in May 2007.