Microsoft, Viacom Saddle Up New Deal

    December 19, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

Advertising and content distribution should add up to a $500 million deal over five years as Viacom and Microsoft unite with a broad strategic agreement.

The actual figures could vary from the $500 million being suggested as a likely base value for the arrangement. As the two companies disclosed their deal in a statement today, one item leaped out and demanded attention:

Microsoft’s Atlas division will become the ad server for Viacom’s U.S. websites and Microsoft will have the exclusive right to sell remnant display advertising inventory on Viacom’s U.S. websites.

Viacom runs MTV and Comedy Central, two well-known entertainment brands. This gives Microsoft exposure to audiences from the Daily Show and The Real World, among others, for multimedia advertising.

Their agreement also extends what content is currently available to Xbox 360 players through the Xbox Live Marketplace. Distribution also extends to Microsoft’s MSN portal, where Viacom will provide short-form and long-form content.

The pairing comes amid Viacom’s running battle with Google over the presence of Viacom shows on YouTube, as uploaded by users of the video sharing service. Viacom thinks this infringement is worth $1 billion and has sued Google for this.