AOL Buys Mobile Ad Network Millennial Media for $238 Million

Mass media company AOL is continuing to vie for digital advertising market share. The companyEUs latest move is a $238 million bet on Millennial Media, an end-to-end mobile platform.

With Millennial Media, AOL adds a leading supply-side platform for app monetization with over 65,000 apps to its publisher suite of offerings, as well as significant mobile brand advertising scale. The buy gives AOL access to about 1 billion global active unique users as well as addressable and cross-screen targeting capabilities.

EUAOL is well positioned as consumers spend more and more time on mobile devices, and as advertisers, agencies and publishers become more reliant on programmatic monetization tools,EU said Bob Lord (pictured), president of AOL, which Verizon recently acquired. EUAs we continue to invest in our platforms and technology, the acquisition of Millennial Media accelerates our competitive mobile offering in ONE by AOL and enhances our current publisher offering with an EUall inEU monetization platform for app developers.EU

Improving AOLEUs Chances

ThatEUs all true, but will it allow AOL to make inroads against Google and Facebook on the mobile ad front? According to eMarketerEUs latest U.S. ad spending forecast, catching Google and Facebook will be no easy task. Microsoft, Yahoo, and Twitter are also beating out AOL on the digital ad revenue share front.

The numbers from eMarketer show Google owns 32.9 percent of mobile ad revenue in the U.S., or nearly $10.02 billion, while Facebook owns 19.4 percent, or nearly $5.9 billion. By contrast, Millennial Media captures 0.3 percent, or $101.2 million. ThatEUs a proverbial drop in the bucket by comparison.

"To be a serious player in the mobile display ad market, media companies need to offer advertisers scale, robust audience targeting and sophisticated measurement tools. AOL will gain ground in two of those areas through its purchase of Millennial Media,EU said eMarketer analyst Cathy Boyle...

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