ValueClick Sells Lead Generation Biz; Ad Network Love Rising; VC Funding Abounds - Did You Get Yours?

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Here's today's AdExchanger.com news round-up... Want it by email? Sign-up here.

ValueClickValueClick Sells Lead Gen Biz

Valueclick pre-empted its February 16 earnings release announcing that it has sold its Web Clients lead generation business for $45 million according to a release. The company also said that its Q4 2009 revenues will fall a few million dollars short of Wall Street estimates: $130.2 million vs. $133.1 million. Nevertheless, the public company's stock traded slightly higher yesterday. Read more.

Ad Network Love

The tide seems to be turning in the past week as public, trade, sentiment seems to be turning in favor of ad networks - though they'll need to evolve their undifferentiated arbitrage model. On yesterday's AlwaysOn event panel on exchanges and ad networks, AppNexus' Brian O'Kelley said, "I think it's short sighted to say that networks are going away. They'll be DSPs this year, they'll be another acronym next year. All these pieces of the ecosystem are just getting more sophisticated." Read more from eConsultancy.

One-To-One Marketing On The Fly

MediaPost's Laurie Sullivan says she has so much data that she is confused in a MediaPost article. OK, not really. But Adchemy's Murthy Nukala tries to make things easier by suggesting that, "Companies should construct every ad and Web page for a specific individual on the fly" as he discusses the Adchemy point-of-view. Read more.

Yodle-ing for $10 Million

Local advertising company, Yodle, announced that it has wrangled $10 million from JAFCO Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and Draper Fisher Jurvetson Growth. The company specializes in local online advertising and lead generation. This market is WIDE OPEN! Read the release.

Google's Research Reach

The New York Times' Bits blog says that Google has been busy funding projects in the 50k range but the company is moving to invest more. Steve Lohr reports, "But Google is stepping up its funding. In a focused approach to be announced on Tuesday, the company is making a $5.7 million commitment to a dozen university research projects." Read more.

NYC DSP E-V-E-N-T

From the Dapper blog, Dapper's Paul Knegten announced a Feb. 24 event in NYC called, "DSPs, Data, Dynamic Ads – the “new” data driven ecosystem." In addition to liquid refreshement and tasty snacks, there will be a panel discussion featuring representatives from MediaMath, Dapper, BlueKai and travel site Kayak. Read more and register here.

$75 Million

Whoa. Ustream is getting $20 million from SoftBank now and up to $55 million later according to MG Siegler of TechCrunch. What does this mean? It means video is going to be even bigger and badder than ever -and the ability to stream your own stuff is huge... hence, the investment in Ustream. Read more.

E-Tailers Get Jazzed About Display

Internet Retailer reports that ecommerce companies are getting psyched about the opportunity that display advertising in unlocking. Social targeting remains an important part of the mix as niche audiences remain valuable. Media6Degrees CEO Tom Phillips says, "If you and I are connected via the New York Times, that gets a low rating. But if you and I both went to the same page of a food blog, we consider that a very strong connection." Read it. (source: markmannino)

The Super Bowl!

DMnews covers the Super Bowl fever as Coca Cola Co., Denny's, Pepsi and Monster.com will feature ads built around social media and loyalty marketing. In fact, Pepsi is ready for a revolution as Nicole Bradley spokesperson says, "Our beverage brands' marketing strategy in 2010 [is] less about a singular event and more about a movement." Read more.

Conversion Rate Issues

Looking at the complexities of a consumer audience and how it interacts with social media, on the Inchoo blog, Toni Anicic goes into conversion rate optimization and argues that "Measurement in percentage form is wrong in so many ways." He suggests that social networks may be the problem in optimizing the funnel saying, "By eliminating the use of social networks we get higher conversion rate as we’re only left with search engine traffic that converts much better." Read more.

AP Content Is King For Yahoo!

Yahoo! has finalized a deal with the Associated Press which means they get to use AP content now and in the future. Not so much for the other big Internet companies. According to Michael Liedtke of the Associated Press, "The AP says it is still negotiating to renew its online licensing agreements with two other companies with far deeper pockets, Google Inc. and Microsoft Corp. Google stopped posting fresh AP content on its Web site in late December." Read more.

VC Returns Sliding Downhill

The National Venture Capital Association says that after analyzing returns over a 10 year period, returns aren't looking so good. In a release, the organization said, "Venture capital performance improved slightly in the shortest and longest time horizons ending September 30, 2009 but continued to deteriorate in the 5 and 10-year periods ending in the quarter." Oh no! Read the details here.

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