Ciarán O’Kane’s MadTech 2022 predictions

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ATS London is moving from its traditional September date to June 14/15, 2022. ExchangeWire believes this reflects a broader view of ad tech and martech.

After all, why focus on a multi-billion dollar retargeting display segment, when you can build the technology layer for the multi-billion dollar marketing industry?

I’m still writing a prediction article a few weeks away from ATS London (limited tickets available) to set the stage for the premium madtech event in Europe. Using Steins, I ranked the probability of these predictions.

From now on – given ATS London’s new date in June and proximity to Cannes – I’ll be using bottles of rosé as my go-to probability icon. I look forward to seeing you all June 14/15.

And here are those 2022 predictions in full:

Shopify acquires Criteo

Shopify could be a retail media powerhouse. With over a million sites using its platform, Shopify could offer shoppers a scaled shopping graph to buy ads across its network of sites. It could also allow customers on its own platform to mine the “Shopify graph” – as well as their own first-party data. The problem here: advertising technology. Shopify does not have one. And it will take time to build. The solution: buy Criteo. Criteo has cleverly shifted its business from display retargeting to retail media. After closing its deal with IPONWEB (June close is most likely), Criteo will have a world-class retail media infrastructure. Shopify needs Criteo to live its best retail media life.
Probability that Shopify buys Criteo: 2/5 bottles of rosé


Mediaocean (Vista Equity Partners) acquires Magnite

Buying and selling converge. If everyone is competing for access to supply, what is the use of the buy-side/sell-side demarcation? Magnite is very cheap per minute and offers Mediaocean so much in terms of CTV and display capabilities. Mediaocean could steal the lead from longtime rival The Trade Desk in the omnichannel media workflow and execution segment.
Probability that Mediaocean buys Magnite: 3/5 bottles of rosé


Goodbye DoubleClick

I conducted a survey on LinkedIn about the future of Google’s third-party ad tech stack. Fifty-eight percent of respondents think Google will never quit ad tech. While I respect the wisdom of the crowd, I still strongly believe that Google will be forced to shed its ad tech stack. Legislation is coming – so it’s only a matter of time.
Probability that Google will be forced to dispose of its ad stack: 3/5 bottles of rosé


The next zero ID shit show in Europe

After Google was fined over US$100 million for confusing the language of its cookie banner, the “reject all” option was made available to users of major CMPs in Europe. I hear anecdotally from some big publishers that “reject all” clicks are on the rise. What happens to these users without consent? Well, ad tech isn’t meant to monetize users without IDs – so the “discard all” CPMs are plummeting. Matching identifiers are the business of ad tech. Will they really reorganize for the zero ID user? Short answer: no. This is going to be a huge problem for European publishers. Pay attention to this.
Probability of a ‘zero ID’ European shit show: 4/5 bottles of rosé


Netflix ❤️ third-party ad technology

An article was recently published explaining why Netflix should buy Roku. At US$10 billion (~£8 billion), that would be affordable – but why spend so much money at this early stage for a program-focused business? Netflix will instead rely on Freewheel and Google to handle direct purchases. And opt for a white label The Trade Desk for programmatic purchases. In the short term, anyway, Netflix ❤️ third-party ad technology.
Probability: 4/5 bottles of rosé


eBay buys ad server to grow ad tech stack

eBay wants to participate in the retail media boom. But it lacks the ad tech infrastructure at scale. eBay will be looking to purchase an ad server solution to help build the stack. eBay would have bought Adform. But the case collapsed on the valuation. eBay may come back with an improved offer. Other potentials include Kevel and Smart.
Probability that eBay buys an ad server: 3/5 bottles of rosé


Retail media ad networks everywhere

Retail media will not reflect programmatic in display advertising. It is highly unlikely that Tesco, Carrefour, or equivalent will inject sensitive sales data into the auction feed. Instead, we’ll see the rise of ad networks selling complete solutions to agencies. The sales gone will be legendary. A pack of Viscounts and a six-pack of Fantas, anyone?
Probability: 3/5 bottles of rosé


Editor popup line rumbles

The fight between ad technology and publisher contextual data will continue until an appropriate business model is agreed upon. In the post-cookie world, contextual data will be essential for monetization on the open web. It could get very messy.
Probability: 4/5 bottles of rosé


The European madtech IPO market comes back to life at the end of 2023

It’s an absolute bloodbath in the markets right now. Tech stocks are hammered on valuations, as investors flee to the safe haven of “predictable growth” companies.

IPO Ad Tech: what could happen?

The IPO market is closed for ad tech companies, but listings will return in late 2023 and much of 2024.

Most European companies Exchange Wire speaks with opt for New York – where there is an acceptance of ad tech as a public market segment. This should be a wake-up call for Euronext and the LSE as they may lose a lot of trades. Here are those 2023/24 candidates in full – along with the likelihood:

– Oguria

The French ad network has developed an interesting data graph built around survey data and proprietary proprietary data assets. The company could do a big PE round – given how much European PEs LOVE ad networks – but it is considering a public listing instead. Can a managed services ad tech company have a successful public listing?
Chances of IPO 23/24:


4/5 bottles of rosé


– Intelligent

Google’s only true full publisher contest. The company recently won big publisher accounts – and is doing $100 million in revenue. Smart could be in the box in the next 12-24 months given Google’s troubles. An independent DoubleClick — lacking the AdWords demand feedpipe — isn’t as intimidating as Google’s Death Star. Chances of IPO 23/24:


4/5 bottles of rosé


-MiQ

MiQ is going to be a very important round of PE later this year. The company is one of Europe’s largest ad tech companies by revenue. At some point, the PE journey will end. MiQ will then likely go public on the NYSE/Nasdaq – but could be a 2025 contender. How they handle Wall Street expectations will be crucial here.


3/5 bottles of rosé


– Permutative

Arguably the most interesting European ad tech company. It’s very well designed for the age of privacy – and its technology is all about enabling the editor. Permitive made a Series B raise backed by Softbank. The company’s trajectory will likely end with an IPO in the United States in 2024.


4/5 bottles of rosé


– Adverity

The European martech unicorn is positioning itself as the business analytics solution of choice for top marketers. Adverity has raised US$165m (~£132m) to date and is likely getting too expensive for most buyers.


4/5 bottles of rosé


– Teas

It attempted to go public in 2021, but the valuation at the time was deemed too frothy by Wall Street. The company generates over $600m in revenue (~£480m) and is working on its cookieless solution. It will consolidate and go public within the next 24 months.


4/5 bottles of rosé


– Infosum

The “clean room” specialist has a great opportunity to build the leading solution in this hyper-growing segment. This could be a commercial sale given the fragmentation of the walled garden.


1/5 bottles of rosé


– Cavai

The Norway-based ad tech platform is part of a new wave of post-cookie vendors shaping the future of the industry. Its technology offering is focused on data-driven creation, connecting top and bottom of the funnel across the open web and retail media. The company will go public but possibly a 2025 candidate.


2/5 bottles of rosé


– Digital TAPTAP

Recently completed a US$100m (~£80m) private equity deal. Its location-based solution is built on a privacy framework. The business is growing. The CEO wants to go public.


3/5 bottles of rosé


– The Ozone Project

This is a wildcard. Ozone has built a technology layer and a cookieless ad-net solution. He plans to sell the technology to international publishers. Ultimately, they will need to raise funds to fund this expansion. If they do, there will have to be a result. An LSE listing beckons – but not for a while.


1/5 bottles of rosé

We look forward to welcoming you all to ATS London on June 14-15 and discussing all of the above.

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