The long-pending agreement between Microsoft and Yahoo that would see the former company’s Bing search engine take over at the latter’s search portal could be close to completion, as European regulators are set to approve the deal this week.
An anonymous source told Reuters that "I expect clearance without any concessions next Friday," and that experts had said antitrust concerns were not a significant factor in the decision, given rival Google’s preeminence in the field.
Tech news website eWeek reports that the deal would see Microsoft pay Yahoo 88 percent of search advertising revenues, and that Microsoft’s ad content distribution network would replace Yahoo’s own.
The final hurdle for the deal – which would rock the world of search engine optimization (SEO) to its foundations – is the U.S. Department of Justice, which is conducting a similar regulatory review. The successful merger would push Yahoo and Bing’s combined search engine market share close to the 30 percent mark, which – according to analysts – would provide Google with its first serious rival in years.