Microsoft writes-down $6.2bn aQuantive deal

Microsoft has announced that it will be taking a $6.2 billion write-down of its aQuantive advertising service. Microsoft bought aQuantive back in May 2007 in order to leverage its search capabilities against Google, but this latest news means that its value has plummeted to almost nothing. As a result, it's expected that when Microsoft releases its latest financial results for the quarter, any profit will be nullified.

Microsoft says that Bing is still growing in the United States, but concedes that its "expectations for future growth and profitability are lower than previous estimates." The aQuantive acquisition means Microsoft has gained tools that helps for online advertising, but that they didn't "accelerate growth to the degree anticipated."

aQuantive was originally acquired by Microsoft in May 2007 for $6.3 billion, with the sale completed several months later in August. Microsoft's profits for this quarter, meanwhile, were expected to total $5.3 billion, although this writedown will likely mean that the company will report a loss instead. The financial figures are due to be released on July 17th. Microsoft notes, however, that it doesn't expect the writedown to impact any ongoing business.