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Microsoft admits $6.2bn deal failed

Microsoft has admitted its largest acquisition in the internet sector was effectively worthless and wiped out any profit for the last quarter, as it announced a $6.2bn charge to write down the value of an online advertising agency it bought five years ago, Reuters has reported. The software giant acquired aQuantive in 2007, which was initially expected to boost Microsoft's online advertising revenue and counter rival Google Inc.'s purchase of digital ad firm DoubleClick. "The acquisition did not accelerate growth to the degree anticipated, contributing to the write-down," Microsoft said. It was Microsoft's biggest acquisition at the time, exceeded only by its purchase of Skype for $8.5bn last year. But it never proved a success and aQuantive's top executives soon left Microsoft.