For the first time, AOL has
unseated Google as the top online video ad property in September. All told, AOL served up 3.7 billion video ad impressions -- the largest number by a single property ever recorded by comScore.
The findings, scheduled for release by comScore on Thursday, are understood to be the direct result of AOL’s decision to buy Adap.tv earlier this year for $405 million. (comScore’s
September figures mark the first time that AOL and the video ad platform are being counted as one unit.)
“AOL’s purchase of Adap.tv was based on the growth of video, so on one
level this is validation of the acquisition,” Forrester analyst Jim Nail said on Wednesday.
For Amir Ashkenazi, founder and CEO of Adap.tv, the comScore data represents a number of
trends, all of which fall under “the evolution of ad technology.” “For a long time, [the market was made up of] a soup of companies with niche solutions,” he said on Wednesday.
“The market demanded a combined solution for agencies and publishes … and our market position reflects that.”
Going forward, Ashkenazi predicted similar mergers and
acquisitions, but declined to speculate on the potential pairings. Crediting larger trends for Adap.tv’s success, he added: “We are clearly at the intersection of traditional TV
[increasingly making way for] video advertising, and manual advertising [making way for] programmatic advertising.”
Industrywide, video advertising is on track to reach $4.09 billion
this year, which would represent an increase of 41%, according to eMarketer. The research firm expects programmatic ad buying to surpass $3.3 billion -- an increase of 73% year-over-year.
Critics continue to question whether AOL paid too much for Adap.tv, which reportedly had less than $100 million in revenue in 2012. The unit, which officially falls under the AOL
Networks’ umbrella, continues to forge ahead with new offerings. Just last month, programmatic TV buying officially debuted on Adap.tv’s media-buying and selling platforms as part of
AOL’s broader Audience Anywhere initiative.