Microsoft’s big spending ways

After buying TellMe Networks for over $800 million, Microsoft seems to be ready to open its check book again. The Wall Street Journal (via Bloomberg) reporting that Microsoft is in talks to buy ad-serving network, DoubleClick. Microsoft’s interest in this company is basically driven by Redmond-based software giant’s desire to compete with Google: at any cost.

DoubleClick has technology called Dart, which can help better targeting of ads. The price tag being thrown around: $2 billion. Not bad for a company that was an-almost road kill after the dot-com bust. Hellman & Friedman paid $1.1 billion in 2005 when it took DoubleClick private in 2005. They sold off some businesses for about $525 million, so for H&F this could be one nice exit.

The price tag is hefty even for company insiders. Is technology worth the price? DoubleClick’s big customer is AOL, which could walk away from Microsoft right into Google’s arms if this deal does happen.

So what do you think? Does this deal make any sense for Microsoft?