Google Buys DoubleClick

Could Google possibly dominate the Internet ad world any more than it will after this acquisition? Just announced: Google is buying DoubleClick, a top online advertising network for $3.1 billion, beating out some other major bidders. This makes Google even more of a search-based ad behemoth than ever before, strengthening Google's online ad business just as it also moves into print and TV ads. DoubleClick will help Google compensate in areas that aren't its specialty -- display and media rich advertising.

This purchase follows a bidding war with Microsoft, recently rumored to buy DoubleClick for about $2 billion. The fact that Google snagged this is a loss for both Microsoft and Yahoo, as it helps Google compete a lot better with them in its currently weaker field of display advertising. Who's really cashing in on this deal is DoubleClick's owners, private equity firm Hellman & Friedman and JMI Equity and Management. I can't say how big DoubleClick actually is because it's private, but its competitors provide some sense of things: 24/7 Real Media grew 43 percent from 2005 to $200.2 million in 2006, while ValueClick's revenue grew 79 percent from 2005 to $545.6 million last year. A fast growing -- and desirable -- field for sure!


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