Facebook to Acquire Advertising Platform from Microsoft

Facebook has announced plans to acquire Microsoft’s Atlas advertising platform.

Confirmation of the intention came late Thursday from Brian Boland, director of monetization product marketing at Facebook.

“Many marketers that advertise on Facebook today use Atlas, and Atlas has been an approved partner for measurement since June,” Boland writes. “Today’s agreement brings us closer together in a way that benefits both Facebook and Atlas’ agency and marketer clients. Atlas clients should not see any change to the service they receive today, and we will continue to innovate and invest in the Atlas platform.”

Financial terms were not made public, however, Microsoft purchased aQuantive – the company behind Atlas technology – six years ago for a report $6.2 billion.

“The acquisition, expected to be less than $100 million, is the surest sign yet that Facebook has designs on becoming an even bigger player in advertising,” Jason Del Rey of AdAge writes. “Facebook is methodically laying the groundwork for an off-Facebook ad network powered by social data, but its plans for Atlas go beyond that.”

According to Boland, Facebook plans to improve Atlas’ capabilities by investing in scaling its back-end measurement systems and enhancing its current suite of advertiser tools on desktop and mobile.

We will also work to improve the user interface and functionality with the goal of making Atlas the most effective, intuitive, and powerful ad serving, management and measurement platform in the industry. Ultimately, Atlas’s powerful platform, combined with Nielsen and Datalogix, will help advertisers close the loop and compare their Facebook campaigns to the rest of their ad spend across the web on desktop and mobile.

To read the full announcement from Facebook, click here.