Yahoo acquires video ad network BrightRoll for $640M

Steven Loeb · November 11, 2014 · Short URL:

The BrightRoll acquisition will help to bolster Yahoo's video platform with more relevant ads

During her time as CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer has made it clear that video is very, very important to the company's future. It has made numerous deals to launch both classic and original content, and it has purchased a large number of start-ups in the space as well.

Now it is taking a big step forward in the video ad space with the purchase of BrightRoll for approximately $640 million in cash, it was announced on Tuesday.

The deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter of next year, will allow BrightRoll will continue to offer its current suite of products and services. Its will also retain its 400 member team. The only difference will be that it will now have "Yahoo’s additional investment and global support," to help it expand.

BrightRoll is a programmatic video ad network and a provider of digital video advertising services. For example, it offers the BrightRoll Exchange (BRX), an online video advertising marketplace that offers buyers access to pools of audited inventory, transparent site-lists and audience targeting.

The company powers digital video advertising for 87 of the top 100 US advertisers and 18 of the top 20 advertising technology companies.

"We have seen Yahoo’s significant commitment to technology excellence, to execution for advertisers and publishers, and to building a world class team.  We are excited to take the next step with our customers and partners to accelerate the growth of the video advertising ecosystem," Tod Sacerdoti, CEO and Founder of BrightRoll, wrote in a blog post. "When finalized, we believe this deal will benefit our advertisers, publishers and partners."

For advertisers, he wrote, they will get access to Yahoo's audience data, for increased in-target efficiency. Publishers will get access to Yahoo's "deep relationships with advertisers and agencies," and will the company "to accelerate the growth of our marketplace bringing more dollars to publishers’ properties."

For technology partners, they will benefit from "the accelerated growth in usage of our platform and increased transaction volume."

As for Yahoo, they immediately get to strengthen their video ad platform.

"Online video advertising is increasingly fragmented across thousands, if not millions, of sites and mobile apps. More so than with traditional broadcast television, advertisers are seeking ways to buy online video advertising at scale across many sites in fewer, simpler transactions," Mayer wrote in a separate blog post.

"BrightRoll provides an effective solution, aggregating high-quality publishers together into a unified network and utilizing programmatic advertising to allow real-time buying on the largest set of online video advertising inventory available. BrightRoll’s approach not only benefits advertisers and publishers, but also improves experiences for consumers, through better quality, more relevant advertisements."

BrightRoll had raised $4o million, most recently taking in a $30 million Series C round funding, from Trident Capital, Scale Venture Partners, Adam Street Partners, and Comerica Bank.

According to Mayer, BrightRoll is a profitable business, and one with net revenues that are expected to exceed $100 million this year.

Yahoo's 2012 acquisitions

BrightRoll is Yahoo's seventeenth purchase so far this year. 

The companies that were also purchased by this year were: Distill, a provider of a video interviewing and scheduling service for recruiters; Aviate, a replacement Android home screen launcher; mobile marketing startup Sparq; virtual gaming company Cloud Party; enterprise app studio TomfooleryIncredible Labs, the company behind mobile personal assistant app Donna; Wander, the company behind blogging app Days; high-quality streaming video company RayV; mobile ad exchange Flurry; recommendation platform Zofari; ad fraud security company ClarityRay; image advertising platform LuminateBookpad, a provider of cloud-based document hosting and editing capabilities for developers;  mobile messaging app MessageMe; visual platform Vizify and destruct messaging app Blink.

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BrightRoll, Inc.


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Led by a team of Internet advertising veterans and engineers, BrightRoll has served billions of advertisements since we got started. We achieved this growth by enabling agencies and brand advertisers to execute smart video ad campaigns across the industry’s leading publishers, including over half of the top 250 websites in the United States.

Dozens of advertising agencies work with BrightRoll to execute campaigns for their premier brands. By offering full site disclosure, detailed performance reports and flexible targeting, we provide advertisers with the reach, frequency, scalability, and transparency needed to achieve their goals.

Hundreds of branded publishers work with BrightRoll to maximize the value of their online inventory. We are fortunate to work with many of the Internet’s leading branded publishers, including multiple television properties, and most of the leading high-volume video sites.

BrightRoll is headquartered in San Francisco, CA, and has sales offices throughout the United States.


Marissa Mayer

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