Microsoft Acquires Equity Stake in CareerBuilder
MSN and CareerBuilder extend U.S. alliance seven years and expand relationship to include key MSN international sites.
Redmond, Wash.; McLean, Va.; Sacramento, Calif.; Chicago — Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: “MSFT”), Gannett Co., Inc (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI) and Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) announced that Microsoft has purchased a minority equity stake in CareerBuilder.com, the U.S.’s largest online job site. In a separate agreement, MSN® and CareerBuilder have extended their strategic alliance, making CareerBuilder the exclusive content provider to the MSN Careers channel in the U.S. through 2013. MSN and CareerBuilder have also broadened their alliance to include key MSN international sites, facilitating an accelerated expansion overseas for CareerBuilder.
CareerBuilder has experienced an unprecedented level of success in the online recruitment space, rising from the No. 3 position in revenue in the U.S. to No. 1 in just five years. The job site averages more than 1.5 million job postings per month.
“Our strategic business relationship with MSN played a major part in CareerBuilder taking over as the industry leader in 2006, helping to drive critical levels of job search traffic,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder. “Microsoft’s equity stake builds on this successful relationship and establishes a global alliance with one of the world’s most ubiquitous technology powerhouses. It enables CareerBuilder to continue to grow faster in the U.S. than any other job site while leveraging a strong international platform to quickly enter new markets in Europe and all over the world.”
“Microsoft has had a strong relationship with CareerBuilder for over three years and helped it rise to top of the industry,” said Joanne Bradford, corporate vice president and chief media officer for MSN at Microsoft. “Taking an equity stake in the most prominent job site in the U.S. presents a unique opportunity to enhance our business relationship. In addition, the agreement to share our global footprint with CareerBuilder unites our worldwide technology and information channels and gives users access to unmatched job search and job distribution resources.”
MSN and CareerBuilder: U.S. Traffic
The relationship between Microsoft and CareerBuilder began in January 2004 when CareerBuilder became the exclusive job search engine for the MSN Careers channel in the U.S. CareerBuilder’s monthly traffic grew by nearly 10 million unique visitors from 2003 to 2004 with MSN contributing a significant portion of the increased traffic. CareerBuilder continues to grow its traffic, which now averages more than 21 million unique visitors per month as part of the enhanced relationship.
Similar to the previous arrangement, the new agreement is also performance-based with financial payments driven by the quality and quantity of traffic delivered. The new agreement provides for an extension to 2013, whereby CareerBuilder will pay MSN up to $443 million over the course of seven years to serve as the exclusive job search engine on the MSN Careers channel.
The business alliance between CareerBuilder and MSN is also expanding on a global scale. Under a new international traffic agreement, MSN has committed to integrating CareerBuilder services across MSN sites, primarily in Europe. The agreement, in effect until 2013, is also performance-based and will make CareerBuilder the exclusive job search engine on key international sites.
CareerBuilder began building a more aggressive presence in international markets in 2006 by launching sites in the U.K., Canada and India. Last month, CareerBuilder announced it has acquired Jobbguiden in Sweden and JobbingMall in the Netherlands.
MSN plans to launch CareerBuilder on MSN sites in most European countries by the middle of 2008 with several rolling out by the end of 2007.
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