Extreme Reach expands ad platform with Adstream acquisition

Published April 21, 2021 By Robert Williams

Dive Brief:

  • Extreme Reach, a maker of web-based software to manage video advertising, agreed to acquire competitor Adstream for an undisclosed sum, per an announcement.
  • Extreme Reach has 700 employees and manages more than 30 million creative assets on behalf of brands, while Adstream is a cross-media advertising content delivery platform that supports more than 7,000 customers with more than 2 million deliveries each year.
  •  The combined company will offer brand marketers software tools to manage creative assets, handle talent and rights agreements, serve digital video ads on connected platforms and distribute commercials on linear TV, per the announcement.

Dive Insight:

Extreme Reach’s planned acquisition of Adstream follows years of buying other companies to build out its platform as video advertising became more digitized, and to expand into other lines of business. The combined company aims to help marketers manage their creative assets and execute video ad campaigns among an increasingly fragmented media landscape that includes a growing number of ad-based video on demand (AVOD) services for connected devices like smart TVs and mobile phones. The combination of fragmentation and “legacy, error-prone manual processes” has become untenable for brands, per the release.

“This acquisition gives us the global scale to transform creative asset management and omnichannel campaign activation worldwide, setting a new standard that meets today’s challenges,” Tim Conley, co-founder and CEO of Extreme Reach, said in a statement.

Three executives from Adstream, which is based in Australia, will have leadership roles at the combined business: Daniel Mark as chief strategy officer, Katie Nykanen as chief product officer and Tim Emly as senior vice president of finance. About 400 Adstream employees will join Extreme Reach after the deal closes in the second quarter, following a review by Australia’s Foreign Investment Advisory Board.

The planned acquisition comes amid a decline in ratings for linear TV, which has led 60% of U.S. advertisers to say they will shift their media spending to digital over-the-top (OTT) or connected TV (CTV) platforms this year, according to a survey by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Among those who plan to shift spending, 81% said targeting and efficiency was a key consideration, and 55% cited incremental reachamong audiences who only watch digital video. The shift to CTV will drive a 54% jump to $6.73 billion in programmatic video ad spending in the U.S. this year, researcher eMarketer forecast.

Extreme Reach’s deal to buy Adstream is the latest sign of consolidation in the marketing and ad-tech industries, which this year has seen a jump in M&A activity as the recovery from the pandemic looks more certain, and deal financing becomes easier to obtain. Recently announced deals include Omnicom Group’s planned acquisition of digital marketing firm Areteans to expand the ad-holding company’s expertise in digital transformation and customer experience. Last month, TripleLift, a programmatic platform focused on native advertising, agreed to sell a majority interest to Vista Equity Partners, the private-equity firm whose investments in ad-related companies include Mediaocean and Integral Ad Science. Magnite, the sell-side platform formed last year after the Rubicon Project-Telaria merger, in February bought rival SpotX for $1.17 billion in cash and stock from RTL Group.