Week in Review: Microsoft Launched a Chromecast Rival, Amazon Video Chief Steps Down, AOL On Announce New UK Content Partners

Here’s what happened this week in video advertising. For a weekly summary of industry news and other VAN interviews and videos, sign up to the weekly Video Round-Up.

WPP Took a 15 Percent Stake in Appnexus, Millenial Media Acquired Nexage

There were two interesting pieces of non-video related M&A action, both of which are likely to eventually impinge on video advertising at some point in the future. First, WPP spent $25 million for a 15 percent stake in Appnexus, a company that has heretofore prided itself on its independence from the constituent players in the advertising market. The move is yet another example of how large swathes of the ad tech world is being slowly absorbed not only by the tech giants, but by the large agency and media groups.

Mobile ad company Millennial Media also acquired Nexage, a mobile SSP and exchange, for $108 million. Nexage positions itself as a premium mobile marketplace and the move represents a significant piece of consolidation in the mobile advertising market.

DirecTV Shareholders Voted Overwhelmingly to Approve Acquisition by AT&T 

More than 99 percent of DirectTV shareholders voted to accept AT&T’s $48.5 billion offer to buy the company.

Microsoft Launched a Chromecast Rival

Microsoft launched a Chromecast rival this week called the ‘Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter’. Priced at $60 in the US, the device will stream

AOL On added 14 new UK content and publishing partners 

AOL announced 14 new partnerships for its premium video syndication platform AOL On. Northern & Shell, British Pathe and Sky News will all be adding their web content and short form content. AOL On say their premium library now has more than one million videos, which now rack up 1.2 billion views a month.

Amazon’s Head of Music and Video is to Step Down

Bill Carr, Amazon’s head of digital music and video is leaving after 15 years with the company, reported The Wall St Journal. Carr, a 47-year-old vice president, announced his decision internally and an Amazon spokeswoman confirmed the news, saying Carr planned to spend time with family and travel.

Video Ad Platform Clearstream Acquires EngageHD

Clearstream, a video ad platform, has acquired EngageHD, a mobile platform Founded By Turn’s Former Chief Of Technology. EngageHD is a platform that enhances mining capabilities, targeting and ad delivery on mobile devices. As part of the deal, former Turn SVP of Engineering and EngageHD Founder, Dominic Bennett, assumed the role of Chief Technology Officer based out of San Francisco.

StickyADS.tv Announced an Outstream Partnership with OMS

StickyADS.tv, a video supply side platform (SSP), announced a new partnership with OMS, a German media company, as the exclusive vendor for outstream formats (or ‘in-text video rolls’ as StickyAds.tv calls them). StickyADS.tv say that the outstream formats help to boost consumer engagement and aid viewability.

Easel TV Launched a New Ad Engagement Platform Tool 

Easel TV, a video software company, launched an ‘Ad Engagement Platform’ tool that enables brands to create micro-channels for their ad campaigns in three weeks. The tool is already being used by brands such as HTC. Advertisers have the option of including branded content or to integrate offers and promotions that can be redeemed online or in-store via Easel TV’s partner Verticly, a social retargeting platform.

Vdopia Upgraded its .VDO Format 

Vdopia launched a new version of its patented .VDO video file format. The newest version of .VDO includes: enhancements that enable video ads to run in more resolutions and aspect ratios than before; upgrades in the conversion process to reduces video file size and load time for faster delivery of ads; automated checks  to make certain that only high quality source files are chosen for conversion; and the new version of .VDO overcomes any syncing or flickering issues with its older version.

Subscribe to Weekly VAN Newsletter

Ad TechConnected TVCreativeEuropeMediaProgrammatic