One of the main reasons I joined Microsoft was the opportunity to impact their success in the Online Services space. I’m not breaking any new ground by saying Microsoft is not the market leader in monetizing the Internet, and we’re playing catch up despite a sizeable market share advantage from a browser perspective.
One of the more fascinating aspects of our battle in the Search and Ads space is how Microsoft is now partnering with the ecosystem to gain market share vs. the old playbook of leveraging a software distribution advantage to out maneuver the competition.
Microsoft understands that acquisitions alone will not result in reaching our market share goals and a lot of the deals we’re making now are focused on empowering the ecosystem to help with the battle. Quite an interesting evolution! Having spent my Pre-Microsoft career building startups that come to market with the odds stacked against them, it’s nice to see Microsoft helping to encourage competition.
Even though Microsoft will never be confused with Pancho Via or other famous partisans, it’s nice to know that the teams I am building recognize that online services requires a different strategy than past markets. Here’s one of the most recent example of how our strategy has shifted: Microsoft and OpenX in deal to boost their online ad businesses.