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Teads sells to telco Altice in a deal north of $300m

Teads had earlier sought to list on the Nasdaq in 2015

French adtech outfit Teads has been been bought by Netherlands-based Altice as part of a deal thought to be in excess of $300m, in what is the latest in a long line of telecos buying adtech.

Neither party has commented publicly on the initial reports although industry sources have claimed the deal was shared with Teads employees last week, with an official announcement expected later today (March 21) at Teads’ office in France.

Formed in 2011, Teads had earlier spoken about its ambitions to list publicly in the US, although was later heavily rumored to be in sales negotiations to other adtech outfits last year.

However, with this deal it is likely that Teads will become a unit within Altice, which bought US-based CableVision in 2016 in a deal worth $17.7bn, with the latest acquisition following on from the purchase of buy-side adtech outfit Audience Partners earlier this month.

Formed in 2011, and later merging with eBuzzing in 2014, Teads claimed it generated $200m in revenue last year, based primarily on the back of its out-stream video ad formats which it has successfully popularized among premium publishers.

The deal represents the latest instance of telcos purchasing adtech in the past 12 months, with US-based Verizon Wireless buying Yahoo (a deal that is set to close later this year, and follows its earlier purchase of AOL), Telefonica-owned Axonix buying Statiq, as well as Singtel’s Amobee buying demand-side platform (DSP) Turn last month.

Commenting on the earlier purchase of Audience Partners, Dexter Goei, chief executive and chairman of Altice USA, said: “By acquiring Audience Partners, Altice USA aims to build the most innovative, data rich, and intelligent advertising platform, offering our advertising and MVPD clients the ability to implement multiscreen addressability and advanced analytics.”

Altice USA, a subsidiary of Altice Group, which is listed in the Netherlands, and is the fourth largest cable operator in the US after last year's deal with 4.6 million customers.

Telecoms companies are becoming increasingly acquisitive in the online advertising space to diversify their revenue streams, and see their rich audience data sets (ie. first party data) as an ideal way of doing so.

Advertisers are likely to welcome the introduction of such players particularly since the online advertising space is dominated by two players, ie Facebook and Google (aka the duopoly). The latter of whom came under much fire after its walled garden strategy led to advertisers inadvertently funding extremist content.

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Ronan Shields

I'm the digital editor at The Drum, and cover adtech and martech. Prefer news and analysis, over opinion pieces. Current fascination(s) are blockchain and media futures trading; also curious about transhumanism on a personal basis. NYC-based, but really London Irish.

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