A Banker’s View: RTL Group Buys Yospace

By David Arslanian
David is a Managing Director at Progress Partners based in Boston.

January 22, 2019 ? In 2019, the AdTech market has picked up right where it left off in 2018, poised for another year of heavy M&A. As part of its global video strategy, RTL Group has agreed to acquire Yospace, the UK-based server-side dynamic ad insertion (SSDAI) company.

The AdTech space is in a constant state of expansion and contractions. We?ve see a strong expansion period – solid VC funding cycle followed by an onslaught of startups further fragment the market with very specific solutions. Each company is now trying to figure out how to best reach the increasingly demanding consumer, but from different angles. Large media and marketing conglomerates understand the synergies these disjointed companies can achieve but they will be pragmatic and methodical in rolling up AdTech firms with complementary capabilities in response.

In the most recent transaction, we have RTL Group?s acquisition of Yospace for $33 million, with an expected close date of February 1, 2019. Once integrated, Yospace will work closely with SpotX, another AdTech company acquired by RTL. It should prove to be a mutually beneficial relationship. Yospace adds a fully integrated, scalable solution for delivering dynamic targeted ads during livestream and premium video events with a specialized focus on local networks. SpotX currently casts a broader net over larger audience bases. Together, they?ll deliver extremely personalized ads to a much larger viewership.

RTL Group is potentially the biggest winner in this deal. It?s compiling a full AdTech stack with global reach?and it?s doing it at a fraction of the price that some other companies are (consider Disney?s $2.6 billion majority stake in Yospace?s competitor BAMTech). From Australia to Europe to the U.S., RTL is now as well positioned to reach new audiences as any other marketing company.

The key trend to keep an eye on for 2019: AdTech consolidation to meet consumer demands and to deliver maximum ROI on marketing campaigns.

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