is pitching to five of the world's biggest advertising companies a deal to buy its digital ad agency Razorfish, the
Wall Street Journal
reports, citing executives familiar with the situation.
The pitch from the software giant includes a proposal to use Microsoft's advertising technologies and possibly buy hundreds of millions of dollars of ad space across its Web properties, the
have expressed interest in Razorfish and are considering a more extensive commercial relationship with Microsoft, according to the newspaper. Microsoft also has contacted
has been hired by Microsoft to shop Razorfish.
Razorfish has about 2,000 workers and had about $400 million in revenue in 2008. A deal to buy it could include agreements to use Microsoft's digital advertising services or to buy ad space across Microsoft's digital properties, the
notes, citing the people close to the situation.
The talks between Microsoft and the ad agencies are preliminary and any deal isn't likely to happen for at least a couple of months, the
reports. One person familiar with Microsoft's thinking notes that Microsoft still hasn't made a firm decision to sell Razorfish.
The price of a transaction could range widely, from as low as $400 million to hundreds of millions of dollars more, the newspaper says.
Spokespeople for Dentsu, WPP and Publicis declined to comment, for the
, while a spokesperson for Omnicom couldn't be reached for comment.
Microsoft bought Razorfish in 2007 as part of its $6 billion purchase of