Dutch Telecom Firm Altice To Acquire Teads For $307 Million

In a play for multiscreen scale, data, and ad growth, Dutch telecom giant Altice on Tuesday said it will acquire Teads, an outstream video provider and ad marketplace, for $307 million.  

The acquisition is subject to reviews and is expected to close in mid-2017.

Altice has been the fourth-largest broadband provider in the U.S. since its  $17.7 billion acquisition of Cablevision in 2016. Teads said it has more than 1.2 billion unique visitors, including 720 million via mobile.

Telecom companies are increasingly interested in gobbling ad-tech firms as they aim to squeeze more assets from their customer bases and look to put data to work. Verizon acquired AOL for $4.4 billion, and SingTel Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. acquired Turn earlier this year.

In acquiring Teads, Altice is getting a company that has relationships with 94 of the top 100 global advertisers, has partnerships with more than 500 so-called "'premium" publishers, 8,000 vertically specialized publishers, and an R&D center in France and New York with more than 100 engineers and programmers.

Altice -- which has first-party data sets for millions of fixed and mobile customers globally, over 30 million of which are in the U.S. and France, its global and regional ad sales organization, and a large advertising business -- will help Teads grow. Altice said it will offer clients data-driven, audience-based advertising solutions for TV, digital, mobile, and tablets, along with an open advertising platform for media buyers, content programmers, and multichannel video-programming distributors. Altice said it will make its first-party data available to Teads in the U.S. and France.

"We will leverage Optimum, Suddenlink and Audience Partners unique data -- all  part of Altice -- to offer sophisticated targeting capabilities, and true multiscreen distribution simultaneously on TV, mobile, and the Internet, with integrated analytics," Teads executive chairman Pierre Chappaz told Real-Time Daily via email.

Teads will continue to run as an independent firm within Altice. The senior management of Teads, including Chappaz and CEO Bertrand Quesada, will continue to lead the business and have agreed to reinvest a significant portion of their proceeds. Chappaz will join Altice’s management board and will be responsible for all of its advertising activities.

Chappaz said Teads wasn't looking to be acquired, "but since we appeared on top of comScore's Video Metrix ranking one year ago, the fact is we have attracted the attention of some of the biggest players in the industry, including Altice. We decided to partner with them because they will help us in building an alternative to Google and Facebook -- a global programmatic advertising marketplace capable of managing not only mobile or desktop but also addressable TV."

The acquisition purchase price is subject to Teads achieving certain revenue targets in 2017 — 75% of the acquisition purchase price will be due at closing. The remaining 25% earn-out is subject to Teads’ 2017 revenue performance and will become payable in early 2018.

“Convergence of telecoms, content, and advertising is at the core of our business. Teads will enable us to offer a truly unique value proposition to brands and agencies on the one hand and the media industry, programmers, and distributors on the other,” stated Michel Combes, CEO of Altice.

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