The Ad Tech Angels Are Back; Google Sued In Australia Over Location Tracking

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On The Side Of The Angels

Many early ad tech companies were founded and backed by a loose cadre of “investorpreneurs,” including Brian O’Kelley, Joe Zawadzki, Auren Hoffman and Jonah and Noah Goodhart. “There definitely is an ad tech cabal,” as O’Kelley put it in an AdExchanger story in 2017. Another generation of entrepreneurs is now getting a similar treatment from a new set of angel investors in the space. Chris Cunningham, an investor and former ad tech entrepreneur himself, has raised $5 million so far – with a goal of reaching $10 million by the end of the year – for a fund to invest in mar tech and consumer startups, Business Insider reports. The new fund, called C2V Capital, is backed by ad tech execs like Brian Quinn, president of OpenSlate, Beeswax’s Ari Paparo, Tapad SVP Chris Feo and David Yaffe, co-founder and CEO of Arbor, which sold to LiveRamp in 2016. Why invest in ad tech? As per Cunningham: “A SaaS business gets repeatable, recurring revenue from other publishers and media companies – the revenue is sticky.” More.

Australia Vs. Google

Australia’s competition watchdog called Google out for misleading consumers over Android data collection. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission filed a lawsuit alleging that between January 2017 and late 2018, Google did not adequately communicate to users that disabling the “location history” feature would not stop the company from collecting location data, The New York Times reports. Google did not inform users that they had to turn off a second “web and app activity” setting to halt data collection, and instead focused its messaging on what features they would lose by turning off data collection. Google plans to defend itself and is reviewing the allegations, according to a spokesperson. The agency is seeking financial penalties against Google, but also wants to raise awareness about data collection. “We need to be getting ahead of them, because this is a whole new world,” said Rod Sims, the commission’s chairman, in reference to big tech data practices. More

The Subscription Prescription

The streaming video land grab is going to heat up in the coming year (or weeks, even) with additions to an already competitive market, including Apple Plus, Disney Plus, NBCUniversal’s Peacock and HBO Max. But subscriber acquisition rates on Google and Facebook, the two natural fits for those campaigns, have gotten out of hand. Television, the other channel for video and mass reach, is diminished because telco and broadcast giants often block ads for competitive streamers. And so subscription services are considering new forms of media and ecommerce bundles to get in front of potential users, The Information reports. “I do think we need to be more creative around bundles,” said Sofia Chang, co-president of WarnerMedia. “Maybe there is an audience for a Stitch Fix and video bundle,” she said (carefully noting it was just a hypothetical). Other subscription-based businesses, such as Spotify or The New York Times, will likely be courted as well. More.

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