Programmatic Publicis: Holding Company Spends October Investing In The New Currencies - Data & Tech

Programmatic has spread across devices, with the “arrival” of mobile serving as the catalyst. It should come as no surprise, then, to see a major holding company making several moves in the cross-device, mobile programmatic ad space.

Publicis Groupe is no stranger to the ad tech ad industry, with its VivaKi unit launching Audience on Demand, the holding company’s de facto trading desk, nearly five years ago. However, Publicis is still chugging along. In the month of October, the holding company was front and center in the programmatic industry.

Early in October, Publicis teamed with VivaKi and Health Media Group to bring programmatic tech to the pharma, health and wellness verticals, which have been slower to adopt automated trading and targeting because of strict legal and regulatory policies.

Shortly after, Publicis invested a healthy $65 million for a 20% stake in Matomy, a supply-side platform (SSP) for video advertising. Matomy also has a multichannel ad platform for display, mobile, social video, email and search advertising.

Just yesterday, Matomy (which Publicis now partially owns) spent $17.6 million in cash and stock to acquire MobFox, a European mobile programmatic ad platform.

Also yesterday, Publicis itself spent an undisclosed amount to acquire Run, a mobile-focused demand-side platform (DSP) and data management platform (DMP).

And if we bend the rules a bit to include late September in Publicis’ busy “month," we can count its expanded ad partnership with AOL to include programmatic video and linear TV.

All of the news is about expanding programmatic tech into new verticals and new channels -- particularly mobile and video. There’s also a fair bit of international (European) impact in these news items, but that’s to be expected for a Paris-based company.

In a statement yesterday about Publicis’ acquisition of Run, Laura Desmond, global CEO of Starcom MediaVest Group -- the Publicis media-buying and planning agency that Run will be aligned with -- said that the “role of the agency has changed,” and that marketers are “no longer negotiating on traditional currencies.” Rather, she said, the industry is “negotiating on data and technologies.”

Publicis has spent the past 30-odd days loading up on both.

"Big data" image via Shutterstock.

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