Confirmed: Google Buys Admeld For Large Publisher Ad Management

Google today confirmed the acquisition of display ad management firm Admeld, which we and others reported last week. Though Google didn't disclose how much it paid for the buy, various news outlets said the deal was worth $400 million. Admeld provides technology and services that help large publishers optimize the inventory they're offering, plugging into ad networks and demand-side platforms to assist publishers in maximizing yield. "The Admeld team is an example of the huge strides the industry is making—it has quickly developed a great service that is helping many major publishers m [...]


Report: Google Acquires Ad Optimization Firm Admeld for $400 MM

In an apparent move to bolster its own ad sales efforts and provide services to large publishers, Google has reportedly made a $400 million purchase of Admeld, a company that builds technology to help ad sellers maximize the value of their inventory. Admeld has relationships with the Weather Channel, IDG TechNetwork, and large newspaper companies like The New York Times Company, Hearst, Tribune and Gannett. The TechCrunch story reporting the acquisition cites "multiple sources." Google representatives said the company doesn't respond to "rumor or speculation." Admeld was founded in 2007 [...]


A Year Later: AdMob A Critical Mobile Asset For Google

There was really never a question that AdMob was going to be a huge asset and accelerator of Google's mobile ad efforts. However the acquisition has more than cemented Google's leadership position in mobile advertising. According to some estimates (IDC, December 2010) Google controls 60 percent of US mobile advertising (search + display).  Of the total, search is estimated to be about 56 percent. Prior to AdMob Google's own mobile display efforts were comparatively weak. A year after the acquisition key personnel from AdMob (e.g., CEO Omar Hamoui) have left but many remain, including [...]


Google Tests New Travel Search OneBox

SEOGadget noticed Google testing a new travel search OneBox interface. I suspect this is an early sign of the Google ITA integration, where Google purchased ITA, a travel software company. A typical Google travel search OneBox looks like this: The new travel OneBox offers a more detailed box of information with departing cities, airlines and prices: Clicking on the plus sign will extend the one box to show you additional departing cities, airlines and prices: I personally cannot replicate it but let me share the screen shots from SEOGadget's blog. Postscript: Goog [...]


Google Buys Sparkbuy: Comparison Shopping Site Now Closes, Team Remains

sparkbuy logo Google has acquired Sparkbuy, a comparison shopping site that has focused on laptops. The site closed today as part of the purchase; the three person team will continue on with Google. Was this a talent acquisition, then? Google wouldn't comment nor give any details on the purchase price for the year-old company. However, a person familiar with the purchase said it wasn't just for the talent. Still, it feels that way. I wouldn't expect Sparkbuy to reemerge, but it does seem some of the user interface design for shopping (Google apparently liked UI ideas the Sparkbuy team had) will make i [...]


Google Q1 Revenues $8.58 Billion, Some Investors Unhappy

google-earnings-featured Google had a strong Q1 with $8.58 billion in gross revenue. Net revenue was $6.54 billion. Both figures were somewhat better than some expected, although many are calling them "mixed." Growth was 27 percent year over year. Expenses and costs were higher and some investors are expressing disappointment; Google shares are down almost 5 percent in after-hours trading. Here are some highlights from from the release: Revenues – Google reported revenues of $8.58 billion in the first quarter of 2011, representing a 27% increase over first quarter 2010 revenues of $6.77 [...]


Gov’t To Okay Google-ITA Deal After Google Agrees To Burdensome Conditions

google-ita-featured The Justice Department (DOJ) has signed off on the Google acquisition of travel software company ITA, but says Google must meet certain conditions. The Justice Department said that as originally proposed the acquisition would have "substantially lessened competition among providers of comparative flight search websites in the United States." The DOJ is requiring Google to do a number of things if it wishes to proceed with the ITA acquisition: Google will be required to continue to license ITA’s QPX software to airfare websites on commercially reasonable terms.  QPX conducts searche [...]


Two Weeks Later, Google Lifts Ban On BeatThatQuote

Google acquired BeatThatQuote.com on March 7th, then the day after, Google penalized BeatThatQuote for violating the Google Webmaster guidelines. Guess what? BeatThatQuote has apparently been un-penalized by Google just two weeks after first being penalized. A search for their name in Google once again returns them at the top result: Is two weeks long enough? Remember Google's How & When Ranking Penalties Are Removed post? Do you think Google was penalized long enough or do you think because Google owns them they were given priority? Related Stories:: Google To Acquire [...]


Google Bans Itself Again By Banning BeatThatQuote.com

Google both acquired and then penalized BeatThatQuote within a single day. Yesterday the financial price comparison site, BeatMyQuote.com was purchased by Google for £37.7 million. And within the same 24-hour period Google decided to slap on a penalty to lower it's ranking due to violating Google's webmaster guidelines. As the news came out that Google acquired the price comparison site, SEOs like SEOBook called out the site's aggressive SEO tactics. Aaron Wall shows how the site was using techniques that went against Google's guidelines, such as link buying, doorway pages and other q [...]


Report: Expect More Aggressive Acquisitions From Google

Despite what many believe to be an overheated market for tech start-ups, Google hasn't been shy about spending. Last week it bought security company Zynamics; today it reportedly agreed to acquire BeatThatQuote.com;  it's still waiting for Justice Department approval on the $700 million purchase of ITA Software announced last year; and it reportedly offered $5 billion for Groupon last year. Today's Wall Street Journal report on Google's acquisition plans indicate the search giant doesn't expect to slow the pace of acquisitions anytime soon, having made a record 48 purchases last year. Go [...]


Google To Acquire BeatThatQuote.com

Money.co.uk reports that Google will be buying BeatThatQuote.com. Google and BeatThatQuote.com have not officially confirmed this as of yet. BeatThatQuote.com is a price comparison websites for loans and financial products. The site offers comparison pricing on loans, mortgage rates, credit card rates, insurance products and more. Google has been known to offer comparison ads for mortgage rates in the past, specifically in the U.K. Although we do not have official confirmation of the acquisition, Ashley Fletcher, the Online Marketing Manager at Beat That Quote, confirmed the buy [...]


Kayak Welcomes Google As Travel Search Competitor, With ITA Acquisition Still Under DOJ Review

In a bit of a surprising interview on Bloomberg News, Kayak.com's co-founder and Chief Technology Officer, Paul English boldly stated that the travel search engine doesn't fear Google's entrance into the travel search market via the proposed acquisition of ITA Software. Kayak is officially listed as a member of the FairSearch Organization, but Google claims English is stating the opposite of what the group has been using as a foundational argument to the DOJ in its opposition to the acquisition. Though English mentioned that they are glad DOJ is looking closely at the terms of the acquisiti [...]


Report: Google Negotiating With DOJ To Prevent Suit To Block ITA Deal

Politico is reporting, as have other outlets, that Google and the Justice Department (DOJ) are now negotiating intensely in the waning days of its investigation into the anti-trust implications of Google's potential acquisition of travel software company ITA. According to the Politico article: The Justice Department has made it clear to Google that it’s willing to go to court to block its acquisition of travel software-maker ITA – and Google has responded by stepping up negotiations to save the deal, a source familiar with the talks tells POLITICO. Sources say that a deal between G [...]


Google Acquires SayNow

SayNow has announced Google has just acquired them. SayNow has a platform that allows voice messaging, one-on-one conversations, and group calls to be instantly integrated into Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Android, or iPhone applications. SayNow's cofounders, Nikhyl & Ujjwal, said: We are thrilled to announce that we have been acquired by Google. Since 2005, we've explored fun and entertaining ways for people to talk with each other. Through the web, smartphones, and even land lines, our products brought communities together through the power of voice. And as Google has some of [...]


What If Google Had Bought MySpace (And What If They Do)?

AllThingsD's Liz Gannes reports that MySpace is considering significant layoffs -- perhaps up to 50 percent of its 1,000 person staff. We also know (and she repeats) that the site could be sold by News Corp. because of recent poor performance. (News Corp's attitude implies that it had nothing to do with that decline.) Reading this piece prompted me to think: what if Google had bought MySpace instead of News Corp? Google is currently struggling to define/execute a social strategy to better compete with the perceived rising threat of Facebook. Would owning MySpace have made things different n [...]


NY Times Argues Against Google-ITA Acquisition — Delicately

In a curious editorial yesterday the NY Times makes a kind of luke-warm argument against Google's acquisition of travel software company ITA. Here's the operative paragraph: Regulators must consider that if Google extends its dominance to the business of steering online customers to airlines and travel agencies, it would be in a position to charge more for this service. Without strong competitors to keep it in check, it might offer preferential placement to some airlines or agencies for a fee, or not list offers from companies that didn’t pay up. This could lead to higher costs for ag [...]


Amazing: Groupon Rejects Google Mega-Offer

Groupon has apparently rejected the $5 billion-plus takeover bid by Google, electing to remain independent and probably go public later. AllThingsD is independently reporting that Groupon's revenues are actually closer to $2 billion than the $500 million previously estimated. I was told several months ago by Groupon President Rob Solomon that the company was on track for $400 million this year; so revenues must have really accelerated. It's a remarkable thing that Groupon's board said no to what would have been the largest acquisition in Google's history. However if the $2 billion revenu [...]


Senator Calls On DOJ To Limit Google’s ITA Purchase

Citing a litany of concerns over competition, airfare, and technology, a US Senator is calling on the Justice Department to put conditions on Google's purchase of travel software company ITA. In a letter to the DOJ on Wednesday, Senator Herb Kohl outlined a number of concerns over Google's purchase of ITA -- the independent software provider that powers many of the top online travel web sites, from individual airline sites to online travel services (Expedia, Orbitz) and aggregators (Kayak, Bing Travel): "Participants in the on-line travel industry are concerned that Google could refuse t [...]


Google Would Be Crazy To Spend $5B For Groupon

Google is sitting on more than $30 billion in cash so maybe $5 billion isn't so much in that context. But it seems crazy (capital C) to me for Google to pay that kind of premium for the company -- making it by far the largest acquisition in Google's long history of acquisitions -- despite Groupon's global footprint and stellar growth. Google could buy one or more of Groupon's competitors (and a lot of other assets) and accomplish many of the same objectives at less cost. But what do I know? I'm speculating that Groupon is in a position to make between $400 and $500 million in top-line re [...]


Google To Buy Groupon This Week In $5 To $6 Billion Deal?

Whew. The rumors of a Google-Groupon deal are getting hotter. Yesterday, there was a report the deal was done for $2 billion. Today, there are two reports that negotiations continue with a price of $5 to $6 billion being discussed. Back on November 19, the first report of a Google-Groupon deal came out from Kara Swisher at AllThingsD. Swisher reported a price well above $2 to $3 billion was being discussed.  Yesterday, Vator.tv reported that the acquisition was actually complete, done for $2.5 billion. Today, the New York Times reports that "people with direct knowledge" say a deal i [...]


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