ValueClick to Buy Fastclick

Following a week of rumors, ValueClick has confirmed it will acquire Fastclick in a stock-for-stock deal worth approximately $214 million.

FastClick, whose ad network served 27 billion impressions last quarter, will become a wholly owned subsidiary of ValueClick. The companies claim the acquisition will make ValueClick the largest online ad network provider.

“The addition of Fastclick should give our ValueClick Media division the industry’s largest reach into Internet users,” said ValueClick chairman and CEO James Zarley. “We expect a straightforward integration of Fastclick — headquartered across the street from our Commission Junction office in Santa Barbara — to quickly realize operating synergies.”

Best known as the largest player in affiliate marketing, ValueClick has grown through a long string of acquisitions into areas including search, email marketing and comparison shopping. It has made more than 11 acquisitions since 2000, including the purchase of BeFree in 2002, followed by Commission Junction in 2003 and PriceRunner.com in 2004. In June 2005, ValueClick bought E-Babylon and Web Clients, and it recently suggested there would be more acquisitions in the near future.

“We’ve shown that opportunities still exist, and we’re still on the lookout,” said Zarley during the company’s conference call last week.

Fastclick went public late last year. In Q2 2005, it delivered over 27 billion ad impressions across its network of 9,000 sites, a 17 percent increase from the previous quarter. Both companies posted strong results last quarter.

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