Declining tech powers, unite! Microsoft, Yahoo, and Aol have agreed to a deal that will let them sell each other’s display ads, in a bid to drive revenue up and help them compete with Google and Facebook. A Microsoft VP characterized the deal as a "rising tide that lifts all boats"; Reuters notes that the companies would still be competing with each other for ad spending and publishing partners. And the trio is betting that such a setup will ensure the deal passes antitrust muster.
"We're not reducing competition in any way, shape or form," the Microsoft VP said. "As a result of transparency, the competition is only going to increase. (We) don't expect any issues on that side." He also added that "other players in the industry are welcome to join us. This is not in response to anybody in particular." Of course, Reuters notes that Facebook and Google are predicted to grow their share of the online display advertising pie this year, while Microsoft, Yahoo, and Aol's slice will likely get smaller.