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Sometime in 2007, when Microsoft acquired aQuantive, it has also acquired the Digital Ad Agency Razorfish. Now 2 years after the Microsoft acquisition, Razorfish is on the market again, the Financial Times reports.
According to FT, Microsoft has elicited Morgan Stanley’s assistance in finding potential buyers for Razorfish. Industry analyst puts Razorfish’s current value at around $600-$700m. The agency currently employs 2,000 employees and has major clients such as Audi, Nike and Kraft.One potential buyer which has been identified as early as now is French marketing group Publicis Groupe which was reportedly in the look out for potential acquisitions, and a Razorfish acquisition could lead to instant global reach. I find this interesting because I’m according to my understanding, Razorfish is also a primary holder in Dentsu Interactive, Japan’s largest interactive ad agency.
Both Microsoft and Publicis have recently reached a strategic agreement which includes Publicis’ use of Microsoft’s ad placement technology on television set-top boxes. So, this could be a first step in an easy Razorfish transition if the company is sold : although, Publicis’ CEO Maurice Levy declined to comment on which company it is eyeing to acquire, another industry analyst commented that the agreement could possibly pave the way for Publicis considering the acquisition of Microsoft’s Razorfish.