Microsoft to Buy European Shopping Comparison Site

August 29th, 2008 at 12:00 am

ciao shopping intelligence

Microsoft is set to acquire a European shopping and review company Greenfield Online.  Greenfield Online operates a couple of subsidiaries including Ciao, Europe’s leading price comparison, shopping and consumer reviews site.  The acquisition will further improve on Microsoft’s strategy to make Live Search the premiere destination for consumers.

"Ciao’s success has been led by a team of talented people who took a unique combination of intuitive technology and the insight that comes out of their passionate consumer community to become one of Europe’s leading shopping comparison sites," said John Mangelaars, vice president, Consumer and Online, Microsoft Europe, Middle East and Africa. "This makes the company a fantastic asset to the future of our search offer. Integrating Ciao’s capabilities into Live Search will provide a strong launchpad for our commercial search offer in Europe and enhance our e-commerce offering on MSN." [Press Release]

Under the terms of the acquisition, Microsoft will purchase all outstanding shares of Greenfield Online at $17.50 per share.  The total price will amount to $486 million.

Albert Angrisani, president and CEO of Greenfield Online, said, "We’re proud of the community that we have helped to establish, and we’re looking forward to exploring the new opportunities, technologies and relationships that Microsoft and the Live Search platform can unlock. Like Microsoft, we are passionate about delivering a great end-to-end commerce search experience. Today’s announcement will significantly accelerate our ambition and will deliver real benefit for consumers and merchants across Europe."