Waterloo Region adtech company Sortable has been acquired by a U.S. competitor looking to scale in the digital ad-management space. Arizona-based Freestar says that Sortable’s technology adds to the company’s existing suite of tools and products, which help content publishers, e-commerce sites and apps increase their revenue through “programmatic advertising” – the automated buying and selling of online advertising.
As we all know, Google’s Core Web Vitals scores and related changes to search result prioritization have thrust site speed and user experience to the forefront for all publishers. Ask any developer at a digital media company why their page loads are slow and they will almost always point to the ads. Since completely removing ads from the internet obviously isn’t the answer, finding the right balance between site speed and monetization is key. Interestingly, a solution I came up with nearly five years ago can be a great tool to navigate Google’s most recent updates.
Freestar, an advertising tech company in Phoenix, said it had acquired a Canadian company that its CEO described as a friendly rival. The combined entity will be one of the largest online advertisers in the U.S.
The ad management space is consolidating. Freestar acquired Sortable Wednesday in a deal that expands Freestar’s inventory by 30% and increases its staff from 90 to 130 people. The acquisition is “completely additive” on multiple fronts, Freestar CEO Kurt Donnell said. The two companies have zero client overlap since ad management firms form exclusive relationships with publishers to manage their advertising. With the deal, Freestar will approach 1,000 publisher clients. All of Sortable’s staff will join Freestar.
PHOENIX, Aug. 17, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Freestar, the leading monetization partner for content publishers, e-commerce sites, and app developers, announced today that it has earned another spot on the annual Inc. 5000 list, the most prestigious ranking of the fastest-growing private companies in the U.S, for the third year in a row coming in at No. 807. Its three-year revenue growth rate of 601% allowed the company to be one of only two companies in the last fifteen years to stay in the top 1,000 each year after earning a No. 1 ranking.
The always volatile digital advertising market seems to be on an upswing as large publishers are seeing dollars return after a dreadful 2020. But with sweeping changes to ad targeting only months away, publisher and marketers’ direct sales conversations have added urgency.
The beginning of the pandemic saw massive drops in ad revenue as cautious advertisers pulled out of an uncertain market. Plus, rampant block-listing of news related to Covid-19, which marketers deemed unsafe for their brands, meant publishers weren’t fully monetizing their highly-trafficked content.
"As ad buyers and sellers brace themselves for the coming cookie changes, companies that built businesses out on media’s long tail now find themselves closer to the center of the action.
Over the past year, ad management platforms such as Freestar and Mediavine have been beefing up their outreach efforts to recruit more publishers as well as advertisers, exploring partnerships with large DSPs and other platforms around identifiers, even joining the early trials of the products coming out of Google’s privacy sandbox."