Friday, May 18, 2007

Now Working for Microsoft

As if every publication hasn't already offered enough coverage on the topic, I'd like to share the news that my employer; aQuantive (AQNT), today announced their acquisition by Microsoft (MSFT).

While every publication and ad rag may have offered you an outsider's take, I'm here to offer you an insider's perspective.

I first learned of the news by email this morning shortly before 8:30am EST. I read the note with mixed emotions — err, mostly surprise and amazement. Rumors of a Microsoft acquisition of our Atlas division have been floating around for weeks, but a purchase of Mother AQNT? Absurd! I wondered, alongside other early morning stragglers; "what would Microsoft want with an interactive advertising and media agency"? Sure, scoop up Atlas' ad-serving tool to go head-to-head with Google/DoubleClick = DoubleGoo. The price of the spin off might hover close to 1 billion, but the days of $3 billion ad-serving purchases are soooo last quarter. 24/7 only cost WPP $649 million!

So, my day at the office today consisted of several all-hands conference calls and in-person speeches — by every last AQNT and MSFT member of senior leadership. The word on the street is, naturally, "business as usual". Once the acquisition officially passes mustard with the U.S. Gov't, our business units will continue to operate separately from our new parent company, folding under MS Professional Services division. Sounds greeaaaat.

What does this mean for Avenue A | Razorfish? What does it mean for me? Time will tell, and this will surely be the spot you'll find out. Stay Tuned.