Questions have been swirling around when Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo would finally bring to market the display inventory partnership announced last November. Today, the three companies answered.
Now advertisers can bid in real time on the companies’ premium, non-reserved inventory through the Yahoo Network Plus, Microsoft Media Network and AOL-owned Advertising.com ad networks. Daniel Sheinberg, director of advertising marketplaces at Microsoft Advertising, wrote in a company blog post that the availability expands the scale available to advertisers through each network.
Yahoo and AOL are stashing their inventory on Yahoo’s Right Media Exchange (RMX), while Microsoft keeps its inventory on the Microsoft Advertising Exchange, which is powered by AppNexus. AOL’s decision to make its inventory available on RMX was the part of the partnership’s agreement.
When first announced, many in the industry perceived the agreement among AOL, Yahoo and Microsoft as a play against Google, which added premium inventory to its offering through last year’s Admeld acquisition. But since the announcement, little indication had been given as to when the partnership would go live. Last month’s announcement that AOL was putting its inventory on RMX reignited talk of the partnership as well as the questions regarding its go-to-market timing.