Yahoo! Selling Stakes; IBM Gets New CEO; Rubicon Project Adds Execs

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Yahoo! Selling Stakes

From India, news outlet VCCirlce says that Yahoo! has sold its stakes in two ad tech firms: Consim Info – a company specializing in matrimonial classifieds sites and a real estate portal; and Tyroo, an online ad network. Yahoo gained $20 million (if my conversion of the Indian Crore is correct) for Consim Info and an unknown sum for Tyroo. Next up for sale: Yahoo!’s stake in Inmac which has a phone search service. Read more. Somebody’s streamlining…


IBM’s board has decided that one of its own, Virginia Rometty, will be the company’s new CEO after CEO Sam Palmisano steps down at the end of the year. Her current role is SVP and group executive for sales, marketing and strategy. Rometty sounds very familiar with IBM’s march toward the marketer as All Things D’s Arik Hesseldahl reports, “Before she ran Big Blue’s global business services unit [she] helmed the tricky integration of PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which was a key acquisition in 2002, as it became the lynchpin of IBM’s strategically important services business.” Read more. Meanwhile, in Big Data-land, big data geeks are stoked as Information Week reports, “IBM’s Hadoop-based InfoSphere BigInsights distributed data-processing and analysis platform is available immediately as a service on the vendor’s SmartCloud Enterprise infrastructure.” Oh yeah? Yeah.

Amazon Reports

Amazon reported its Q3 2011 results and eked out a profit of $78 million on nearly $11 billion in net sales. Read the release. And, from The Wall Street Journal’s live blog (subscription) of the earnings conference call: “An analyst asks a question about Amazon’s video streaming service, Love Film. [Amazon CFO Tom Szkutak] says that the company is investing in content. He does not drop any hints as to what type of content.” Ah yes, Amazon the media company. The Business Insider’s Jay Yarow notes investor pain as the company revised downward its projections for Q4 earnings as it is apparently spending like crazy to burst out of the gates with its iPad competitor, the Kindle Fire. Read the call transcript from Seeking Alpha.

Rubicon Adds Execs

Former ContextWeb/PulsePoint exec Jay Sears and Jeremy Fain, previously of CBS Interactive, have claimed new roles at sell-side platform The Rubicon Project. According to the release, Sears will “serve as SVP, Marketplace Development and will build out the Rubicon Project’s existing demand side trading business” while Fain will fill the VP, Client Services role. Read the release. And, read Digiday’s Mike Shields piece on Rubicon and SSP sector machinations.

Partner With The Marketer

In Ad Age, Global Head of Digital for PepsiCo, Shiv Singh, tells Silicon Valley to get a clue and start working with marketers before they crank out the latest gizmo or piece of plumbing. “If we are brought into the picture right at the end in a simplistic fashion, we will struggle to extract decent business value from those relationships,” says Singh, who clearly has bought into the power of data-driving relationships with the consumer. Read it.

Mobile Upper

Former Aol ad tech exec Jamie Fellows takes a bow as Millennial Media releases its 3rd quarter mobile trends report. Fellows is now SVP of Product at Millennial and offers a couple of Millennial mobile stats, “We took a big picture look at iOS, and saw that over the last year, impressions on the operating system grew 60 percent. Of particular note, iPad impressions have grown 456 percent over the last year!” More mobile koolaid.

The Mess Of Complexity

Working from a friend’s suggestion of “Ad networks are a mess,” Yieldbot CTO Rick Shea discusses on his company’s blog about his decision to come aboard the publisher-focused ad tech company two years ago. Apparently, no regrets as he writes, “I’ll step it up and say this: ad serving may be the most complex distributed application there is.” Read more.

Engage, Mr. Sulu

In an article on Digiday, Jason Krebs of Tremor Video takes issue with those who think engagement metrics aren’t possible in online video ads. Krebs says, “Any company that can’t be transparent and show a marketer how its advertising actually works is going to be left out in the cold.” Read it.

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