This is all part of Publicis effort to shift towards online, beginning with its founding of digital arm VivaKi, which I've written about before. This deal will help its media buyers target search better. Tribble has this gem from a Publicis spokeswoman:
An unnamed spokeswomen from Publicis replied to the question:Why was Google looking to unload Performics? Google acquired the company as part of its acquisition of DoubleClick, but it had been expected to sell Performics quickly. Performics essentially advises companies how to up their Google rank, so being owned by Google presented an obvious conflict of interest.
"How do you think this Performics deal will affect the rest of the holding companies"
"they (the holding companies) are going to have a hell of a time catching up"