Hot on the heels of the MySpace-Google deal comes news from the NY Times that Facebook (Facebook) have inked a three year agreement with Microsoft, making adCenter the exclusive provider of banner ads and sponsored links on the site. The deal is quite clearly a reaction to the MySpace (MySpace) ad deal, since the serious talks only began last week. No financial details are being given, which prevents a comparison to Google’s (Google) $900 million, but Steve Berkowitz of Microsoft has said the move is “not comparable to the MySpace deal because we focused on the right economics for both parties”. Uh-huh.
Founded in 2004, Facebook is the second biggest social network in the US – it has 9 million users compared to MySpace’s 100 million or so. The network already runs promotions with Apple (see iTunes on Facebook) and has struck other promotional deals like the recent Facebook credit cards, where companies form sponsored groups on the site. The Microsoft ads will go live this fall.