ADOTAS — As speculated earlier, Publicis has agreed to buy the digital advertising agency Razorfish from Microsoft for $530 million.
Publicis will issue 6.5 million in shares to the software giant, worth $232.6 million, at Friday’s closing price, and pay the rest in cash. The two companies also signed a strategic alliance agreement to deepen their ties in digital advertising while Microsoft uses Bing to expand in search.
The Seattle-based Razorfish, formerly called Avenue A/Razorfish has about 2,000 employees, and an analyst estimated its value between $600-700 million based on sales of about $400 million last year. Microsoft acquired the ill-fitting agency as part of its $6 billion takeover of aQuantive in 2007.
Razorfish will continue to operate under its own name, and will remain Microsoft’s “agency of record” for online advertising and marketing.