Amazon Confirms Sizmek Acquisition, Setting Course to Challenge Google

Sizmek's ad server business is second only to the search giant

Sizmek had positioned itself as an alternative to Facebook and Google's walled gardens.
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Amazon has confirmed its intent to purchase Sizmek Ad Server, along with Sizmek Dynamic Creative Optimization suite, after the ad-tech company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Financial details were not disclosed publicly, and the deal is yet to close, per a statement made on Amazon Advertising’s website. The agreement concludes weeks of speculation.

“Once the deal closes, Sizmek Ad Server and Sizmek DCO will operate separately from Amazon Advertising for the time being,” it reads. “We look forward to working with the team, and we’ll share more updates as we invent and create new opportunities to better serve our advertisers over time.”

Pre-bankruptcy, Sizmek had attempted to position itself as an independent alternative to the walled gardens of Facebook and Google. Its ad server business was widely regarded as the second most commonly adopted buy-side ad server in the industry—although a distant second place to Google’s offering. This makes Amazon’s purchase a clear statement of the company’s intent to press ahead with its expansion of what is already the third-biggest digital advertising offering in the sector.

Sizmek filed for bankruptcy protection at the end of March after its private equity backers Cerberus Capital Management lost patience with its plans to launch a fully independent ad stack to challenge Facebook and Google.

The result was the liquidation of the company, including the sale of its demand-side and data management platforms to Zeta Global.


@ronan_shields ronan.shields@adweek.com Ronan Shields is a programmatic reporter at Adweek, focusing on ad-tech.
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