Microsoft announced the acquisition of AdECN, an advertising exchange platform company. AdECN’s technology serves as a hub where advertising networks can come together in a neutral, real-time auction marketplace for buying and selling display advertising.
Microsoft is serious about the advertising business. Check out this quote from a C/Net article. "We are hell-bent and determined to allocate the talent, the resources, the money, the innovation to absolutely become a powerhouse in the ad business," Ballmer said.
Earlier this year Microsoft acquired aQuantive, a large advertising and creative company which includes; Atlas and DRIVEpm for advertisers and publishers, and Avenue A / Razorfish, one of the largest online ad agencies.
For the first time in history Microsoft will spend more on acquisitions than on internal R&D. And remember that Microsoft spends more than $6 Billion annually on R&D. This is a BIG change and signals that Microsoft is serious about the advertising business.