Posted August 6, 2008 3:27 pm by with 15 comments

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Last March Google acquired DoubleClick and it’s affiliate and search marketing arm Performics. That sent some chills up the spine of a lot of companies who saw it as a conflict of interest. Today it was announced that Google is selling a part of Performics, to Publicis Groupe, one of the top four global advertising companies.

Just this June Google rebranded Performics to the “Google Affiliate Network” but seemed to have done little else with the division. That was a relief since Google is the world’s largest search engine and they owned a company who tried to get their clients to the top of search results.

Google’s blog noted they still intended to sell the search marketing division of Performics: “As noted in earlier communications, DoubleClick Performics’ Search operations are being spun off and sold to a third party. While many advertisers have relationships with both DoubleClick Performics’ Affiliate and Search, there have always been separate account teams and product-specific specialists servicing clients’ search and affiliate programs.”

Last year Google disclosed that they had been working with Publicis Group. No doubt they are working to bridge gaps between the print advertising and online advertising worlds. Google needs to better service agencies and agencies want to expand their online offerings. Google will continue to benefit from this partnership without the conflict of interest they had when they owned it.

Publicis Group can now offer SEM services (paid search and search engine optimization) to their clients and develop technology to manage this across search engines. Performics has over 150 search engine marketing (SEM) clients, representing over 200 top global brands.

The deal is expected to close at the end of this year.