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December 14, 2006

Baidu, Microsoft in alliance over Web ads in China

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano at 9:54 AM

Baidu.com, the Google of China, will sell advertising for Microsoft Web sites, according to a Securities and Exchange Filing today. The deal could be a big win for Microsoft's nascent business selling search-related online advertising.

Reuters first reported the filing, which says the companies are announcing a strategic alliance, beginning this month, around paid search advertising -- the source of most of Google's revenues.

"As a result of this strategic alliance, Microsoft will display Baidu's paid search listings on the search results pages of certain Microsoft websites, including MSN, Live, and other partner websites in China," according to the filing.

"Microsoft is committed to bringing innovative online services and software, including search services, to Chinese Internet users," Erik Johnson, general
manager of the Microsoft Online Services Group in China, said in a statement. "China is one of our most important markets and the strategic alliance with Baidu will help us provide new opportunities for advertisers which will further enhance our search business in China."

"Baidu's partnership with Microsoft recognizes the huge potential and rate of growth of the Chinese online search market," David Zhu, COO of Baidu, said in a statement.

The SEC filing included no financial details of the deal.

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