MSN Extends Overture Paid Search Deal

By Matthew Hicks  |  Posted 2004-11-18 Print this article Print

The Microsoft division commits to another year with Yahoo's sponsored-links division, even as it prepares to replace Yahoo's Web results in 2005.

Microsoft Corp.s MSN division has extended its sponsored-links contract with Overture Services Inc. for another year. The companies announced an agreement on Thursday that runs through June 2006. The previous deal between MSN and Yahoo Inc.s paid search division was due to expire in June 2005.
The move signals that MSN is not ready to drop paid search results from Yahoo next year, even though it has outlined plans to switch its Web results from Yahoos search engine to its own engine in 2005.
Redmond, Wash.-based MSN launched a beta of its search technology last week, which is running simultaneously with its main MSN Search site that taps Yahoos Web search results. "Overture has been a strategic partner of MSN since 2001, and we look forward to continuing our productive relationship," said Yusuf Mehdi, an MSN corporate vice president, in a statement. As part of the agreement, MSN can run Overture ads on its sites in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Overture, of Pasadena, Calif., is one of the largest paid search providers alongside Google Inc. MSN Search runs Overtures sponsored links alongside its main Web search results. Earlier this year, MSN reconfigured the way it displays paid search ads by more clearly labeling them and limiting the number that can appear atop nonpaid results. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis about productivity and business solutions.
Matthew Hicks As an online reporter for, Matt Hicks covers the fast-changing developments in Internet technologies. His coverage includes the growing field of Web conferencing software and services. With eight years as a business and technology journalist, Matt has gained insight into the market strategies of IT vendors as well as the needs of enterprise IT managers. He joined Ziff Davis in 1999 as a staff writer for the former Strategies section of eWEEK, where he wrote in-depth features about corporate strategies for e-business and enterprise software. In 2002, he moved to the News department at the magazine as a senior writer specializing in coverage of database software and enterprise networking. Later that year Matt started a yearlong fellowship in Washington, DC, after being awarded an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship for Journalist. As a fellow, he spent nine months working on policy issues, including technology policy, in for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He rejoined Ziff Davis in August 2003 as a reporter dedicated to online coverage for Along with Web conferencing, he follows search engines, Web browsers, speech technology and the Internet domain-naming system.

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