(Updated to reflect comment from Facebook)
Facebook and Google are rivals in multiple ways. Not only are they both social networks, though Google+ has never really been able to compete, they are also both going after the same ad dollars. So its probably safe to say that is what has probably been keeping Google off of Facebook's Ad Exchange, which allows advertisers to buy retargeted ads on the network.
But, honestly, the only ones who have really suffered as a result of the feud have been Google's clients, who have been denied access to Facebook's massive audience.
Finally, the two companies seem to have come to their senses, and realized that there is potentially a lot of money to be made if they work together. So Google announced in a blog post on Friday that it will be working with Facebook by joining FBX.
Through the partnership, clients will be able to buy inventory on FBX through Google's DoubleClick Bid Manager starting in a few months.
"We help clients access dozens of private and public exchanges in more than 75 countries, and continue to see double-digit quarter-over-quarter growth in spend – last quarter was our biggest ever," Payam Shodja, DoubleClick's senior product manager, wrote. "But we’re always looking at ways to serve our clients even better."
DoubleClick allows its clients to buy ads on a multitude of different exchanges, which allows them to display ads across a slew of different websites, while Facebook Exchange allows marketers sell retargeted ads, and to use real-time customer data to reach a larger audience on Facebook. Essentially, if a person visits a website, but does not wind up buy anything, that business can retarget those people the next time they log on to Facebook.
"We are happy that Google is joining Facebook Exchange. We think that relevant ads, targeted to the right people, are good for people and businesses," a Facebook spokesperson told VatorNews.
The Exchange debuted in June of last year, and came out of beta in September. In that short time, the success of Facebook Exchange was already being touted by multiple companies who used it, including AdRoll, TellApart and Triggit.
Not being able to advertise on Facebook was probably hurting Google, and the advertisers using its services, financially.
Facebook has become a major player in the advertising space, especially since it has over one billion monthly users. Advertisers drool over those kinds of numbers. If Google wasn't able to provide them access to that number of people, the advertisers might have started to use another service. So it seems like this is in the best interest of Google, as it will a great boon to their clients.
Or, as AllThingsD pointed out, did this deal actually come from ad buyers giving Facebook grief over forcing them to switch services to buy space on the network?
Whatever made this deal happen, it should be extremely beneficial to Facebook, a company that has seen its advertising revenue skyrocket recently.
In its latest quarterly earnings report, Facebook's advertising revenue was $1.60 billion, or 88% of total revenue. It increased 61% from the same quarter the year before.
(Image source: http://www.fastcompany.com)