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Microsoft Takes $6.2 Billion Charge

The write-down is an acknowledgment that the company wildly overpaid for aQuantive.

Microsoft said Monday that it has taken a $6.2 billion write-down due to aQuantive, an online advertising company it acquired in 2007.

The charge is essentially an acknowledgment that the world's top software company paid $6.3 billion for a company that is, in fact, worth only about $100 million.

Microsoft's purchase of aQuantive was pitched five years ago as a way to quickly ramp up its ability to compete with Google in the fast-growing Internet advertising business.

"The acquisition did not accelerate growth to the degree anticipated, contributing to the write-down," MIcrosoft said in a statement Monday.

The write-down basically wipes out any chance for a fiscal fourth-quarter profit for Microsoft, which was expected to earn about $5.3 billion in the frame, according to Reuters.