Microsoft Rumored To Be Launching Bing Fund, To Back Startups

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According to well-sourced rumors, Microsoft is poised to reveal the Bing Fund, a brand new incubator effort. It's not a typical fund, however, and as its name suggests it's actually intended to drive innovation in Microsoft's own Online Services Division (the segment of the company that contains Bing, MSN, AdCenter, and other online tools for tasks like advertising), and a Microsoft job ad says it's going to be "working with startups and accelerators to bring a wave of innovation to OSD." Bing has been a huge and controversial effort by Microsoft to steal search market share away from Google and thereby drive revenues through online advertising associated with Bing's search results. Microsoft last week had to write down $6 billion for the purchase and failure of online ad seller aQuantive--a move that pushed its quarterly finances into a technical loss.

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