Microsoft Elbows Google Aside For EA Deal

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Microsoft’s purchase of Massive, an in-game advertising company, and some executive-swapping, enabled it to beat Google and other competitors for the EA contract.

Microsoft Elbows Google Aside For EA Deal
Microsoft Elbows Google Aside For EA Deal

Madden NFL, NASCAR, and Tiger Woods Golf will be among the titles delivering ads from Microsoft’s Massive network. Microsoft needed all the resources it could muster to beat the field and grab the prize, a contract with Electronic Arts.

Reuters said Microsoft had to face down a challenge from Google, which owns in-game ad firm Adscape, and others companies seeking the choice deal. ‘Madden’ and ‘Tiger Woods’ rate among EA’s top-selling titles, the Madden franchise being especially strong.

Though Madden was a key part of the deal, a Massive executive said they needed more than just the football title to make everything work:

“The real issue here is that we’re making a network play. If I just had ‘Madden,’ while great, it would be of limited value to advertisers,” said Cory Van Arsdale, chief executive of Massive, a game ad company that Microsoft bought last year for $200 million.

“We need to build an overall network and this is a major stepping point to have us do that,” Van Arsdale said in an interview with Reuters.

It probably helped that EA and Microsoft have executives placed at each other’s companies. Microsoft’s former gaming chief, Peter Moore, now runs EA Sports. Ex-EA executive Dan Mattick will take over Moore’s job at Microsoft.

Microsoft Elbows Google Aside For EA Deal
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