The deal adds to RTL Group’s existing multi-channel network holdings. In 2013, it acquired a majority stake in BroadbandTV, the fourth-largest multi-channel network on YouTube. It owns a minority stake in DiviMove, a European multi-channel network.
“Advertisers tend to stay away from consumer-generated video, but with a Disney or an RTL behind them, all of a sudden they have more credibility,” Nail said. “It’s reassuring to marketers you have a big traditional company overseeing [MCNs] and taking issues of viewability and fraud seriously. These big companies understand what advertisers want and expect to get out of their advertising.”
The deal helps RTL achieve additional scale in online video. StyleHaul adds to the content side, and video SSP SpotXchange on the technology side — though it’s unclear how the two might work together.
RTL Group is growing its own video views organically and through acquisitions like StyleHaul. For the full year of 2014, it projects a total of 40 billion video views, double the total for 2013.
With 900 million views a month, StyleHaul would contribute over 10 billion views to that 2014 total.
CPMs from video views will be only one piece of the monetization strategy. Native video, or branded content, is a key part of StyleHaul’s monetization strategy, attracting such advertisers as Macy’s, Maybelline, and L’Oreal.
RTL already owned 22.3% of StyleHaul. The $107 million acquisition brings the total to 93.6%. It will invest an additional $20 million into the young company’s growth as part of the deal.
StyleHaul first came on the scene in 2011, founded by CEO Stephanie Horbaczewski. Its CRO, Alison Kennedy, hails from Glam Media.