Facebook acquires video advertising firm for 'more relevant' customer targeting

By Peter Gothard
03 Jul 2014 View Comments

Facebook has acquired video advertising firm LiveRail for an as-yet undisclosed figure believed to be in the region of $400m-$500m.

LiveRail, which says it already delivers more than seven billion video advertising shots per month, was founded in 2007, and says it specialises in providing "premium publishers with the technology to sell their video inventory smarter and safer across all devices".

LiveRail also offers services that provide data to marketers to help them decide where best to show their ads at a given time.

In a blog post, Facebook's Brian Boland, who is vice president of ads product marketing and Atlas (Facebook's 2013 acquisition of Microsoft's ad server), said that the acquisition is "an opportunity to make video ads better and more relevant for the hundreds of millions of people who watch digital video every month".

"Publishers will benefit as well, because more relevant ads will help them make the most out of every opportunity they have to show an ad," he continued.

The news that Facebook will be further tightening its control over how its advertisers can appear to customers comes just days after revelations that the social network was carrying out a "psychological experiment" back in 2012, in which it was manipulating posts seen by around 700,000 users in order to measure how emotional states could be transmitted across user bases through Facebook.

Facebook originally stumbled with its IPO in May 2012, when it was criticised for having no firm monetisation plans for a future in mobile - where an ability to effectively carry advertising is seen as critical.

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