Media Agencies Profit From Arbitrage, But Some Brands Benefit, Too, ANA Finds

More agencies are buying discounted media and selling it back to clients at a premium

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Media agencies are doing arbitrage, purchasing media from suppliers and selling it back to their clients for more than they bought it for. It’s known as “principal buying,” and according to new research by The Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the practice is widespread and still growing.

The report cites findings from a quantitative survey of 128 respondents—client-side marketers who are ANA members. The organization conducted supplemental qualitative interviews with 16 of those respondents; plus, it gathered input from legal professionals and media auditors.

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