IAR Bits and Bytes

Yahoo Gets Antitrust Nod for Overture Buy

Yahoo on Wednesday said it cleared the last regulatory hurdle on the way to completing its acquisition of Overture Services .

With the expiration of the 30-day waiting period required by the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, Yahoo and Overture now must get shareholder approval. Overture said separately that it would hold a meeting on Oct. 7 for shareholders to consider the merger. Yahoo has not set a date for a vote. The merger is expected to close in the fourth quarter.

Yahoo agreed to acquire Overture Services in July in a cash-and-stock deal initially valued at $1.6 billion. The combination will create a search powerhouse that will compete head-on with Google.

Interactive Television Alliance Supports Ad-ID Platform

The Interactive Television Alliance (ITA) said on Wednesday that it would support a key platform for further developing interactive TV and on-demand services.

The ITA said it supported the Ad-ID platform, a data structure for interactive TV developed by the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Association of National Advertisers.

Advertisers and agencies see Ad-ID as a key tool for making TV advertising work better. It works as a Web database that holds identifying codes for all ads, holding information about each ad and campaign.

ITA Chairman Art Cohen said Ad-ID would be an important step toward developing interactive advertising guidelines that would make TV advertising more effective.

“Television advertising needs to move quickly into the digital age,” he said in a statement. “Advertisers want to take full advantage of new technologies that enable addressability, interactivity, and — most important — accountability.”

CoolSavings Moves Multi-Brand Coupons Online

CoolSavings announced on Wednesday a new online coupon product designed to mimic the multi-brand free-standing insert ads that consumer package goods manufacturers commonly place in the Sunday paper.

Multi-Brand Events are designed as an online complement to CPGs’ offline efforts to pair different brands together in promotions. Unilever, for example, might pair coupons for Dove soap with Lipton tea and Surf detergent. CPGs can offer the Multi-Brand Events either on their own Web sites or CoolSavings.com.

CoolSavings said the Multi-Brand Events would give advertisers more data to parse, including demographics, redemption, and which brand combination work best.

“The fact is, it is becoming increasingly difficult to reach today’s consumer through a single media channel,” said Matt Moog, CoolSavings’ chief executive, in a statement.

CoolSavings and other online coupon companies suffered a recent headache when a number of supermarkets stopped taking Internet coupons after word spread of counterfeit coupons being printed from computers.

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