Thursday, October 25, 2007

Microsoft beats Google to a Stake in Facebook

Microsoft has claimed a major victory over its all time rival Google, as the software giant has won the race to invest in the red hot social networking platform Facebook.

Microsoft just announced that it would take a $240 million equity stake in Facebook during the company’s new round of financing, which is being valued at $15 billion - a stunning figure for a business that did not exist prior to 2004. As part of that deal, Microsoft will also expand its existing ad sales relationship with Facebook, including the addition of international sales coverage.

Regardless of the final ad sales details, Microsoft’s win over Google – which had been reported to be chasing down a stake in Facebook as well – is significant, as the tech company continues to play catch up in the online media/ad sector. Microsoft’s investment in Facebook could also be seen as a blow to another rival, Yahoo. The struggling portal had offered a billion dollar last year to buy the company outright, but Facebook had refused to accept the offer.

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