Fox's year-old .Fox Networks web ads operation is buying itself more video advertising clout, taking a 56 percent stake in UK video ad platform Utarget. The eight-year-old Windsor-based outfit has a network of over 630 publisher sites to which it delivers 15-second clickable pre-rolls, contextual videos and persistent in-page videos, as well as video pop-unders and interstitials.
The acquisition price is undisclosed and is under the threshold at which News Corp (NYSE: NWS) would be compelled to give the figure, though .Fox Networks ("dot fox") president Hernan Lopez told me Utarget is getting "a reasonable multiple" based on its revenue "north of 5 million" from the last 12 months.
The purchase has a particular emphasis on the pop-unders, which Utarget calls "tvsub" and which keep the video ad paused until the user closes the overlapping window. Utarget's software products will be rolled out to dot fox's 17 international offices and the company will be rebranded "Utarget.Fox", though the company itself will continue to operate only in the UK, Germany and some other European countries. CEO Phil Cooper will stay on-board and Lopez is joining the board.
Lopez on the rationale: "We want to be very closely associated with online video, where we see a huge opportunity. There is a lot of online video available but very little is advertiser-friendly and even less of it is bought and sold on planner-friendly terms"
More detail at our sister site paidContent:UK...
By Robert Andrews