AT&T, world’s largest telecommunications company, the second largest mobile telephone services provider in the United States is in talks with digital ad exchange Company AppNexus for a complete buyout at a possible $1.6bn (£1.2bn). It would provide more power to AT&T to take on the likes of Facebook and Google in the advertising space.
AT&T Inc. is an American multinational company which has its headquarter in Downtown Dallas, Texas. On June 14, 2018, AT&T has also acquired mass media conglomerate WarnerMedia for $85bn (£64bn). Now AT&T has become world’s most extensive media and Entertainment Company concerning revenue. Previously, AT&T had gone for a complete buyout of Otter Media, a video streaming company.
Randall Stephenson, CEO, AT&T group said in a recent interview to CNBC, “You should expect some smaller, not like Time Warner, but some smaller M&A in the coming weeks to demonstrate our commitment.” He also suggested there would be further mergers to spearhead the company’s advancement in advertising.
However, AT&T advertising and analytics CEO, Brian Lesser, did not confirm the buyout of AppNexus. He hinted that “we need more tech” which added fuel to the buyout news. Since his appointment as the CEO last year, Lesser is given the task of advancing the telco’s ad business. He was also a board member of AppNexus itself. AT&T wishes to promote more into its already dominant position in TV, mobile and broadband services.
Brian Lesser has also been given the task of managing ad inventory on the company’s pay-TV offering. AT&T is currently the largest provider in the US after the annexation of DirecTV.
Though the company is experiencing a slowdown in subscriber rates, it plans to move towards an ad-supported streaming service, DirecTV Now. This is the space where the service of AppNexus could be a real help.
AT&T plans to tap into AppNexus vast wealth of user data to promote ads to different households, known as addressable advertising. AppNexus would help AT&T in this area by providing a full platform, and technology to accomplish it.