What: Millennial Media and AppNexus signed a strategic partnership to create a new premium mobile exchange called Millennial Media Exchange, or MMX.
Why is it important: This move represents the relevance of mobile marketplace for customers worldwide. Mobile strategies need to become more focused, smart and fast.
By means of a press release issued Tuesday, September 17, mobile ad network Millennial Media announced it had partnered with renowned New-York based ad-tech company AppNexus, and created Millennial Media Exchange (MMX), which is presented, as sources such as WSJ reported, as the world’s largest premium mobile advertising exchange.
The deal, as AdExchanger says, will lend AppNexus some much needed scale in the mobile arena, because until recently, its core business was traditional display advertising, although under the lead of CEO Brian O’Kelley it had already embraced a more aggressive approach regarding its mobile strategy.
Moreover, as Business Insider‘s Jim Edwards says, this move is a solid indicator that “the mobile ad-tech space is consolidating fast into a handful of big players” (Twitter, for instance, recently acquired mobile ad exchange MoPub). Thus, MMX will bring about a mobile marketplace that will surpass the one offered via Google. (As a matter of fact, Millenial recently partnered with Cisneros Adsmovil so as to extend its platform to Latin American markets).
AppNexus’ clients will have access to Millennial Media’s sales inventory and to the Jumptap’s real-time bidding, “programmatic” buying platform it recently acquired. Mollie Spilman, Millenial’s EVP and CMO, said that this strategic partnership will be a “catalyst” for bringing “programmatic to mobile in a premium and scalable way.”
In the end, the goal is to let clients move faster with mobile, and AppNexus, as Spilman says, will “enable all the buying and selling of mobile inventory that the market has been waiting for.” In other words, as Business Insider puts it, a huge array of buyers will be combined with a huge array of sellers.
Forbes reports that Millennial Media went public last year as a mobile ad network involved in direct sales of ad inventory on smartphones and tablets, and now the MMX partnership represents the company’s ongoing shift to bet on “programmatic” (automated) advertisement buying and selling on mobile. Although neither company expects to earn major revenue from the exchange until next year, they both hope that their partnership will encourage more spending on the quickly bought and sold programmatic ads we mainly see these days in the form of ads for gaming, dating and other types of mobile applications.
“When a large, premium advertising company and a leading technology provider come together, it accelerates the market into rapid expansion. Our partnership with Millennial Media will unlock their scale, high quality supply and unique data to ignite the mobile marketplace”, said Brian O’Kelley.