Over the course of 2014 marketers spent millions with ad-tech companies for programmatic marketing solutions, various reports show the growth in the area. As a results vendors also spend millions (and billions) trying to one up their competitors. Some vendors such as AcuityAds went public back in the spring of 2014, and the company has seen seen some growth, but is still trading under a dollar per share. AppNexus raised $60M back in late 2014 and is very close to filing its own IPO decided to close its Canadian operations and focus on other markets.
During 2014 we also wondered whether Casale Media and eyeReturn Marketing would join forces and merger, but that might have just been some fun on the baseball field. Rocket Fuel’s Canadian operations had nothing but growth during 2014, while BrightRoll was acquired by Yahoo.
Two other Canadian companies who have been on our radar of late are JUICE Mobile and Exchange Lab, both of which have had some growth over 2014, Exchange Lab raised $8M in funding, we also broke the story on two of their big staff announcements here and here. Knowing both founders, Neil Sweeney (JUICE Mobile) and James Aitken (Exchange Lab), they each have unique management styles which makes then stand out and had such have made some great decisions and other ones. While competition is always a good thing these two founders are here to win the game, and are not afraid to mince words at a conference. Neither one is likely to sell their company, but an IPO might be something either Neil or James would look into after another round or two of of capital is raised.
With the looming problem in the programmatic space, it is inevitable that one of these two companies will make a major play in late 2015.