Just six months after shelling out $1.65-billion in stock for YouTube, search monolith Google has paid $3.1-billion cash for DoubleClick – 50% more than Microsoft was apparently prepared to pay for the online advertising software firm.

Microsoft has reportedly complained that the deal is "anti-competitive" giving Google control not only of DoubleClick's extensive advertising software, but also to its broad portfolio of advertisers including MySpace and The Wall Street Journal.
Reports suggest that Microsoft had approached equity firms Hellman & Friedman and JMI Equity with a bid of $2-billion for DoubleClick in March. Yahoo! and AOL were also said to have been interested.
Now Google has poked a finger in Microsoft's eye, spurring senior VP and general counsel Brad Smith to call foul: “This proposed acquisition raises serious competition and privacy concerns in that it gives the Google DoubleClick combination unprecedented control in the delivery of online advertising, and access to a huge amount of consumer information by tracking what customers do online," Smith says in a statement. "We think this merger deserves close scrutiny from regulatory authorities to ensure a competitive online advertising market.”
Eish! As Mary Poppins famously quipped, "Just a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down …"