RTL Group has signed an agreement to acquire control of Yospace, a market leader in server-side dynamic ad insertion (SSDAI), which allows media owners to replace ads with fresh ones, including targeted ads, in their streaming services. The EUR 29 million deal will give RTL Group three of the five board member positions at the company, whose customers include BT Sport, TV4, ITV and Seven West Media.
RTL Group will use the technology to help its own streaming channels introduce more personalised ads, but the company is also fully committed to helping media owners worldwide roll out the technology. Yospace CEO Tim Sewell and Chief Technology Officer David Springall will continue to manage the day-to-day operations of the company, reporting to its Board. The transaction is expected to close February 1, 2019.
RTL Group already owns SpotX, which provides a complete advertising platform encompassing ad serving, programmatic infrastructure and first/third-party audience data enablement. SpotX and Yospace have been working together for some time, and at IBC 2018 provided a joint demonstration of how smart ad decisioning combined with server-side ad insertion enables personalised ads as a way to improve revenues from broadcaster streaming services.
An RTL Group press release says: “The acquisition of Yospace complements our ad-tech stack by ensuring a key technology that can win, retain and scale premium media clients, including RTL Group’s broadcasters and streaming services.”
Bert Habets, CEO at RTL Group, provides more detail about the rationale for the deal. “The acquisition of Yospace is an important step in building out our Total Video portfolio and will help drive two strategic goals at the same time. First, we gain a competitive, fully integrated and profitable solution that is key to further grow our ad-tech business. Our goal is to continue expanding SpotX into a leading, independent monetisation platform for broadcasters, VOD services and publishers.
“Secondly, this acquisition will help build local streaming champions in the markets where we have strong families of channels. The Yospace technology makes advertising on streaming services more personal, which means a better consumer experience, enabling superior monetisation of our premium advertising inventory.”
Tim Sewell, CEO at Yospace, says: “Our clients make significant investments in their video offerings and content licenses. Yospace has proven that it can provide an unmatched quality of service, even with millions of concurrent users. This new relationship with RTL Group will allow us to extend our customer base to all entities of the biggest European broadcast and video network, but RTL Group is also fully committed to support the further roll out of our services to bring more innovative products to media owners around the world.”