Why Verizon wants to buy AOL

Earlier this week Verizon announced that it plans to buy AOL in a deal worth $4.4 billion. So what are they after?

In the past telcos acquired media players for their content – remember the AOL Time Warner merger? Not a big success story. Foad Fadaghi, Managing Director at Telsyte, says this week’s acquisition is very different. Whilst content is part of the deal, it is more to do with advertising technology. In media-land they call it programmatic – the technique to serve targeted content across multiple devices.

On this week’s Crosstalk, Mitch Waters, ANZ Managing Director for AOL platforms describes how Tim Armstrong, their CEO, has been busy acquiring leading ad-tech companies, leading to the recent launch of their One advertising platform.

Graham Christie, a board member at the Mobile Marketing Association, says the opportunity is huge for telcos, who should be “sitting on the crown jewels” when it comes to understanding and profiling mobile users.

Buying AOL is Verizon’s way of capitalising on this opportunity. What will local telcos do?

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