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Snapchat makes moves towards automated ad sales with reports of ad tech acquisitions

Snapchat is looking to sustain the exponential growth it has achieved in recent months and monetise its coveted millennial audience by strengthening its advertising credentials.

Dom Burch doesn't get Snapchat

The social media service is reportedly looking into building ad technology that would allow it to automate its ad sales and has been looking at a number of tech acquisitions for its in-house team.

According to Re/code, the company has been in talks with a number of ad tech startups, including Beeswax, a startup that helps advertisers bid to target particular users, and Metamarkets, an analytics firm focused on programmatic buying.

Snapchat currently uses a sales team to work directly with brands and media buyers but the new application programming interface (API) plans follow the same model used by Facebook and Twitter and will help it dramatically boost revenue.

The Los Angeles-based company has been deliberately cautious around building digital ad revenue, aware of the danger of causing an imbalance between user experience and the requirements of marketers.

The company has only been selling ads for a little of a year and the failure of Apple's iAd illustrates that the status of a company cannot guarantee success, especially if it has no background in generating ad revenue. By looking into ad tech acquisitions Snapchat appears to be recognising its inexperience on that front and adopting the same model as Facebook and Twitter lays out a path for success.