Two of the leading providers of online video advertising, Ebuzzing and Teads are due to merge shortly to create a new group who aim to list on the NASDAQ in 2015. The French businesses have been separately developing "outstream" video advertising – i.e video ads that are typically embedded within articles (i.e. not in-stream), often on autoplay and muted, unless the user hovers over the ads to hear sound. The deal combines their areas of expertise in the fast-growing online video advertising market. The combined entity will have 300 employees in ten countries, with a combined turnover in 2013 of US$70 million, projected to reach US$100 million this year.
Merger Advances Push into US Markets
Most of their clients are currently in France and the U.K., but the merger will advance their push into the U.S. with recently-opened offices in New York and Miami, and another planned for Chicago. Asia is currently serviced from South Korea, with plans to expand there as well.
Pierre Chappaz started Ebuzzing in 2007 and will be president and CEO of the new group. He also founded comparison site Kelkoo, which he sold to Yahoo for US$650 million ten years ago. Ebuzzing distributes video advertising for such brands as Samsung, Adidas, Heineken, Acer and LG. In a press statement he said:
There is not enough instream inventory, so we invented outstream to run in social feeds, between paragraphs in articles, and in apps. Twitter is going the same way with video advertising, but we are super premium.
Teads CEO, Loïs Soubeyrand, co-founder the business in 2011 said, "Our video ad platform allows clients… to monetize all types of content with video advertising. Our plan is to double our R&D staff by the end of 2015 to further increase our technological lead and bring additional innovations to the market.'
The Teads video advertising platform boasts management of video inventories for online publishers including CNBC, The Financial Times, Forbes, The Economist, The Guardian, Le Monde and La Repubblica. It specializes in private marketplaces where its publishers can monetize video advertising in either a programmatic or a traditional way.
The new company, 'Ebuzzing and Teads,' will operate out of Luxembourg, presumably to avoid France's draconian tax regime The formation of the new group is reportedly inspired by Criteo, the online-ad retargeter, that filed for a $190 million IPO in September 2013 – with its stock jumping by more than 30% on the first day of trading. Coincidentally, Pascal Gauthier, who was COO of Criteo until April 2013, will be on the board of the new company. Chappaz said that they have chosen to list on the NASDAQ because 'it's US analysts understand the value of what we do – the value of advertising inventory and the creation of new inventory.'