Reuters, Multex in Joint Ad Deal

Global news and information giant Reuters will join forces with financial services site Multex.com in a joint ad deal aimed at bolstering revenue.

Through the agreement, financial terms of which were not disclosed, Multex’s sales force will represent inventory on both companies’ consumer sites, Reuters.com and Multex.com. Advertisers on either site, then, will be encouraged to also purchase ads on the other, and vice versa.

The thinking is that by combining available inventory and audiences, the two sites will be better equipped to woo advertisers.

“I believe together, Reuters and Multex can better address the needs of a wider base of advertising clients,” said Lavinia Calvert, executive vice president and publisher at Reuters’s Media division, which oversees Reuters.com. “Having the Multex sales force sell these highly complementary sites allows us to even more closely tailor solutions to meet the ever-changing needs of our advertisers.”

The companies also said they planned to work together to develop new, combined advertising products.

“This and future joint efforts will bring new and increasingly creative options to the online advertising community,” said Multex Senior Vice President Azhar Rafee.

The agreement between the two companies — which could both be viewed as competitors in providing information to the financial services industry — comes as each continues to struggle in the face of ebbing revenues from a troubled client base.

Last month, Multex posted second-quarter results showing some revenue improvement over first quarter, at $22.8 million, but a slight decline from a year ago. Reuters, meanwhile, is coming off of posting its first losses since going public on the London Stock Exchange in 1984. The company said revenue shortfalls at its online trading unit, Instinet, and restructuring costs at both Instinet and its primary newsgathering and financial services technology divisions contributed to the loss.

Management at Reuters and Multex each said their company’s troubles stemmed from weakness in the financial services industry.

The move also comes as other media rivals are putting aside their differences to jointly reach advertisers. In June, CBS MarketWatch.com , NYTimes.com, USAToday.com, CNET Networks , and weather.com announced a plan to pitch their combined audiences to advertisers as part of a consortium dubbed the “At-Work Brand Network.”

In addition to jointly promoting inventory on each other’s sites, the players involved in the At-Work Brand Network also will encourage advertisers to buy into models like dayparts.

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