Opera Acquires Mobile Theory and 4th Screen Advertising To Beef Up Mobile Ad Business
Norwegian-based browser powerhouse, Opera, announced it is acquiring Mobile Theory for $18m and 4th Screen for $8m, with potential earn-outs bringing in an additional $32m and $6.5m respectively in 2013 and 2014. The move comes at the same time Opera announced its latest quarterly earnings, in which revenues were up by 31 per cent to 253.1m Norwegian Kronor ($44m).
Mobile Theory and 4th Screen, which focus on rich-media advertising solutions, will help expand Opera’s existing mobile advertising business. Opera already offers a range of mobile ad services across many smartphone and feature-phone mobile platforms, which generated $200m in revenue for publisher partners last year. Opera reports 160 million monthly active users and 100 billion monthly page views, so it’s no surprise that it is making moves like this to better monetise that base.
The benefit of buying two ad networks instead of one lies in Mobile Theory being headquartered in San Francisco, with 4th Screen headquartered in London — thus giving Opera the option to span both the American and European markets.
Vodafone implements TagMan’s technology to create “unstoppable digital”
Vodafone UK has implemented real-time attribution and tag management technology from TagMan in what the mobile operator is calling its strategy for “unstoppable digital”. It says this will transform the company’s understanding of the digital marketing campaigns it runs, radically altering its approach to that investment as it expands activity in this area.
Vodafone online and telesales marketing manager Gareth Davies explains: “We truly know how paid search, natural search, email, display affiliates and such interact and support each other.” Davies added that using new providers would offer better value for money since TagMan will enable it to add new tags to its web pages in minutes rather than months.
TagMan announced a partnership with call-tracking specialist AdInsight in December 2011 that combines online with offline analytics. The companies said this would connect the dots between customers’ entire online journey, and any phone calls to a business, by housing AdInsight’s tracking inside the TagMan tag management system.
At the time, the companies were investigating their client bases to develop a joint trial programme of the integration, for which Vodafone would seem to be a perfect candidate. With successful implementation of TagMan’s offering under its belt, it seems only a matter of time before the mobile operator joins the dots even further to include phone tracking as well.
Online Advertising Provider Tribal Fusion launches the AdChoices Icon in Europe
Tribal Fusion published a statement this week announcing their adoption of an AdChoices icon, acting as user assurance the company is only serving ads in accordance with IAB’s Good Practice Principles.
“We are big believers in providing people with transparency and choice in how we use their data for Online Behavioural Advertising (“OBA”, to use the regulatory jargon)”, states Doug Conely, Senior Director for Global Data and Targeting at Tribal Fusion. “We were early signatories to the UK IAB’s Good Practice Principles and have been vocal advocates of the self-regulation process. That’s why we were also immediate signatories to the EU Framework and now the EASA Best Practice Recommendation on Online Behavioural Advertising. A major component of this is the requirement for 80% of behaviourally targeted online display ads across the European Union to carry the AdChoices icon by June 2012.”
As of Monday 13th of Feburary 2012, all new ad creatives loaded onto their system to run within any country in the European Union will carry the AdChoices icon, whether that campaign is using OBA or not. Clicking on the icon will direct the user to their relevant site within youronlinechoices.eu, where they can get more information about cookies and OBA as well as choosing whether to opt-out or not.
Conely feels implementation of the AdChoices icon is just the beginning. “This is not the end of the story for the AdChoices icon. Over time, companies will need to add ‘metadata’, which is information on all the companies working the chain causing that ad to be served, e.g. advertiser, agency, exchange, data exchange, ad network, etc. The icon on its own is not sufficient. Users need to be aware of what it means as a broad symbol of transparency and choice when using the internet. Lastly, right now, the paradox of the opt-out cookie is that if you clear your cookies you clear your opt-out preferences. The industry needs to move fast on a sensible browser-based solution.”
OpenX first full quarter of profitability (Q4 2011)
OpenX’s advertising technology services (including OpenX Enterprise) saw profitability last year with a Q4 year-over-year growth rate of 100%, compared with the same period in 2010. While OpenX Market saw year-over-year growth rate of nearly 700%, the company announced earlier this week.
OpenX has now exceeded an annualised revenue run rate of more than $100m, with over 1 trillion ads served last year and this year opening with more than 200 billion ad transactions per month — a trend they hope to increase as the year progresses.
Tim Cadogan, OpenX CEO, expects continued profitability for 2012: “Our focus is on helping publishers make more money by optimising all their ad revenue streams in one comprehensive platform so they can maximise revenue. In 2012, we’re extending our core mission by making OpenX’s platform fully device-agnostic so we can deliver the benefits of revenue serving across all screens: Smartphone, tablet, laptop, PC & Smart TVs.”
So is an IPO in the works?
“It’s premature to commit to it at this point, but it’s definitely something we’ve been thinking about.”ExchangeWire