Millennial Media Forms Mobile Ad Exchange With AppNexus

The mobile ad tech space is on fire this summer as power and reach is consolidated among fewer, large-scale players. Millennial Media and AppNexus are the latest pairing in what has become a rush of major acquisitions and deals.

The companies have joined forces to launch Millennial Media Exchange (MMX), which claims to be the world’s largest premium mobile advertising exchange. The move gives AppNexus an instant foothold in mobile, and Millennial access to one of the hottest ad technology platforms in digital media.

MMX implements real-time bidding (RTB) for the buying and selling of mobile ads on a programmatic basis. The joint venture will also deliver unique data, tools and monetization schemes at greater scale, according to Millennial and AppNexus.

“By adding the industry-leading technology of AppNexus to the existing RTB exchange foundation that we have already built and acquired, the MMX will leapfrog existing solutions in the market and unlock tremendous value for our partners,” comments Paul Palmieri, chairman and chief executive of Millennial Media. “Our full ad tech stack will be one of the most powerful in the digital advertising industry, with further innovations already under development.”

MMX is a mash-up of AppNexus’ real-time bidding technology with Millennial Media’s platform, audience and inventory. Other details of the partnership are still unclear, like when or how money will change hands between the two firms. Finances aside, MMX is now in the race to capture and claim mobile ad spend from marketers who want to bring more ad technology into their daily routine. The companies claim that MMX drives better results, greater control and ROI than other platforms and exchanges on the market today.

The new partnership was revealed just one week after Twitter acquired its own mobile ad exchange in MoPub, and barely one month after Millennial’s Jumptap acquisition.

AppNexus only recently began making strides in mobile after it gained a leading position online among ad buyers. The new deal will give its clients access to Millennial’s inventory and eventually Jumptap’s buying platform. Millennial’s ad inventory will only be accessible programmatically via MMX, where advertisers can also bid on individual impressions and target campaigns based on detailed audience data.

“In April, we made a commitment to solve the challenges that have kept mobile from reaching its full potential,” notes Brian O’Kelley, chief executive of AppNexus. “When a large, premium advertising company and a leading technology provider come together, it accelerates the market into rapid expansion. Our partnership with Millennial Media will unlock their scale, high quality supply and unique data to ignite the mobile marketplace.”

MMX is currently only available to select advertisers, but Millennial Media encourages interested parties to learn more and register for access at its site.

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