21st Century Fox has agreed to acquire true[X], the company founded seven years ago by Joe Marchese to develop better ways for agencies and brands to deliver attentive consumers to their digital ad campaigns. Terms were not disclosed, but the companies said true[X] will continue to operate as a “stand-alone business” following the acquisition.
The acquisition is consistent with Fox acquiring or taking strategic stakes in best-of-class ad technology companies, which continue to operate autonomously. The company previously took a major stake in online audience exchange Rubicon Project and folded its Fox Audience Network into it. Rubicon remained autonomous and subsequently went public.
Like Rubicon, true[X] has become an important market-maker in the digital audience marketplace. While it is not an open market-based exchange, it helps advertisers and agencies make a market around acquiring only attentive consumers to campaigns by insinuating various ad formats and campaigns in places that consumers would otherwise be interrupted or would have to pay for premium content, media access or gaming.
Fox described true[X] as a “leading video advertising company that specializes in consumer engagement and on-demand marketing campaigns” and said it would continue to service a wide range of television clients, as well as major consumer brand marketers ticking off Microsoft, Visa, Apple, Disney, Coca-Cola, Kia, Kraft, Macys, Nestle, and Procter & Gamble, as part of its roster.
As part of the acquisition, the companies said true[X] would work closely with Fox Networks Group to “drive engagement between brands and consumers on Fox’s proprietary digital platforms.”
“The connections between brands and consumers have continued to evolve within digital video environments, and true[x] is at the center of this vital area of innovation,” James Murdoch, Co-COO of 21st Century Fox, said in a statement announcing the deal.“As a creator and distributor of content, 21st Century Fox’s interests are very much aligned with our mission and vision to build technology to support a thriving digital video marketplace,” added true[X]’s Marchese.