What: AT&T is negotiating the acquisition of advertising tech platform AppNexus.
Why it matters: This would allow AT&T to compete with Facebook and Google, companies that are currently dominating the industry of digital advertising.
A few days after AT&T completed the acquisition of Time Warner at US $85 million, it has been announced that the telcom company is negotiating the purchase of AppNexus for what some sources are saying could be a sum larger than US $1.6 billion.
After acquiring AppNexus, AT&T would be able to monetize Time Warner contents through an advertising platform. Those contents include HBO, Warner Bros, CNN, etc. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of 2018.
“Ad tech unites real-time analytics and technology with our premium TV and video content,” said Brian Lesser, CEO of the division at AT&T. “So, we went out and found the strongest player in the space. AppNexus has scale of infrastructure, advanced technology and diverse talent. The combination of AT&T advertising & analytics and AppNexus will help deliver a world-class advertising platform that provides brands and publishers a new and innovative way to reach consumers in the marketplace today.”
“Innovation is core to the heritage of both AT&T and AppNexus, and we have an exciting opportunity to chart the future course of advertising together,” said Brian O’Kelley, CEO, AppNexus, in a statement. “Combining AT&T’s incredible assets with our technology, we will help brands and marketers power new advertising experiences for consumers. It’s what the market is asking for, and together we’re poised to deliver it.”
Through advertising, carriers like AT&T can grow their revenues around the data that they already have about their connectivity customers. While AT&T is focused mainly on the US market, AppNexus will give it further reach into Asia-Pacific, Australia, Europe, and Latin America, where the company already owns Mexican carriers Iusacell, Nextel, and Unefón, as well as DirecTV Latin America.