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April 13, 2007

Google Pays $3.1 Billion for DoubleClick


I don't know if there's a single ad blocker or cookie filtering program that doesn't include doubleclick.net in its black list. For me, DoubleClick is associated with ugly animated banners and tracking cookies. But since today, DoubleClick is a part of Google's empire and will help it expand in the display ads area, where Google failed to attract too many advertisers.

"Web advertising leader Google Inc. said on Friday it has agreed to acquire DoubleClick Inc., a top online advertising network, for $3.1 billion, beating out other major Internet players with its bid."

The major Internet player outbid by Google was Microsoft and that was probably the explanation for this huge value paid by Google for the largest and most ungoogly acquisition ever made.

"Acquiring DoubleClick expands Google's business far beyond algorithm-driven ad auctions into a relationship-based business with Web publishers and advertisers. (...) DoubleClick's exchange is different from the ad auctions that Google uses on its networks because the exchange is open to any Web publisher or ad network — not just the sites in Google’s network," notes New York Times.

But what is DoubleClick anyway?
DoubleClick is a provider of internet ad serving software. Its clients include agencies, marketers (Universal McCann Interactive, AKQA etc.) and publishers who service customers such as Microsoft, General Motors, Coca-Cola, Motorola, L'Oreal, Palm, Visa USA, Nike, Carlsberg and many more. (...)

DoubleClick was founded in 1995 as Internet Advertising Network by Kevin O'Connor and Dwight Merriman. DoubleClick was initially engaged in the online media business, meaning it helped web sites sell advertising to marketers. In 1997 the company began offering the online ad serving and management technology they had developed to other publishers as the DART services. During the internet downturn, DoubleClick divested its media business, and today DoubleClick is purely involved in ad management from the technology end — uploading ads and reporting on their performance. (...)

DoubleClick is sometimes linked with the controversy over spyware because browser cookies are set to track users as they travel from website to website and record what commercial advertisements they view and select while browsing. However, the company maintains that it is important to understand the difference between DoubleClick's ad serving tags and the spyware/adware companies.

Update. In Google's press release, Sergey Brin says:
"It has been our vision to make Internet advertising better - less intrusive, more effective, and more useful. Together with DoubleClick, Google will make the Internet more efficient for end users, advertisers, and publishers." And what about the lack of intrusiveness?

9 comments:

  1. Yawn! More advertising for me to block from google.

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  2. Some headlines:

    The Cookie King
    DoubleClick has served more cookies then Nabisco and Keabler combined and now they have sold all those valuable crumbs of information about you and me to Google for $3.1 billion in cold cash. Google says they're not evil, but DoubleClick certainly is.

    Google-DoubleClick: Dangerous monopoly?
    I smell monopoly here, one that could be disastrous for many Web site publishers --and ultimately bad for Web consumers as well. Here's the danger: Google already knows a tremendous amount about the traffic it sends to individual Web sites -- where it comes from, what people are looking for, even some basic demographics. With DoubleClick in the fold, they will also know what ads are being served on any given page. That gives Google unprecedented insight into publishers' business.

    Google acquires Doubleclick for $3.1bn
    Doubleclick handles the logistics of display advertising for more sites than any other provider of ad "serving" -- and Google has the largest network of advertisers. Together, they'll be able to do for banner ads what Google's Adwords program has achieved for text link advertising.

    Giga Om
    Google just bought Double Click for $3.1 billion, news which wasn’t received too well by the stock market - shares are trading down a buck-and-change a share. The all-cash deal is almost twice what Google paid for YouTube, the New York Times reports. The amount Google spent is shade under Google’s revenues in the fourth quarter of 2006 ($3.21 billion) and what the company earned in entire 2006.

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  3. The official Google blog posted this FAQ which reads a little like a bottle of smoke, for instance, it doesn't once mention the fact that DoubleClick is evil. Hopefully they will address this obvious fact in their casual, humorous, and knowing way in the days to come.

    It does attend to the end usual occasionally.

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  4. Here goes google's good reputation.
    Good job...

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  5. "Here goes google's good reputation.
    Good job..." Chris I agree.

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  6. I don't think this was a bad move for Google. It seems like a defensive play. Buying DoubleClick doesn't seem like it would help Google much (especially if they are still determined to "do no evil"). But it's a lot better for them to pay the cash to buy it than allow it to fall into the hands of Microsoft.

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  7. I agree with L33tminion. To allow DoubleClick to fall into the hands of Microsoft would only further induce the evil of what's already a sinister entity.

    I've loved Google for quite a while now, and I'd like to think that the purchase of DoubleClick was only a means of fighting the evil. Afterall, if you buy a company (no matter what the cost) you are then entitled to do with it what you wish. And, so far, Google has only done good things with their investments.

    Perhaps, it's ultimately going to keep Microsoft from growing and convert all of DoubleClick's customers to Google; and at the same time allow Google to culminate those advertisers into a more unobtrusive web presence!

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  8. I think doubleclick revenues will increase when the google domain is used. Everyone who knows how filters doubleclick domains, but who's gonna give up there "Google Habit"? Here come the ads....

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