Roku to Acquire Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising Business, Accelerating Roku’s Launch of Dynamic Ad Insertion for TV Programmers and Marketers
Nielsen and Roku will Expand Traditional TV and TV Streaming Coverage Across Roku’s Platform to Help Standardize Cross-Media Measurement
San Jose, Calif., and New York, NY — March 1, 2021 — Roku, Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKU) and Nielsen (NYSE: NLSN) today announced a strategic alliance between the two companies that will help shape the future of media measurement and TV advertising in a streaming-first market. Roku has entered into an agreement to acquire Nielsen’s Advanced Video Advertising (AVA) business, which includes Nielsen’s video automatic content recognition (ACR) and dynamic ad insertion (DAI) technologies. The acquisition will accelerate Roku’s launch of an end-to-end DAI solution with TV programmers. In addition, Nielsen and Roku will enter into a strategic partnership to integrate complementary Nielsen ad and content measurement products into the Roku platform and further advance Nielsen ONE, the company’s cross-media measurement solution.
“Tens of billions of dollars continue to be spent annually on traditional TV advertising,” said Louqman Parampath, VP of Product Management at Roku. “Combining Nielsen’s AVA technology with Roku’s innovative ad tech and scale will enable us to deliver the benefits of TV streaming advertising to traditional TV. Roku will bring the promise of DAI to the market for the first time ever at scale — providing better targeting and measurement for advertisers, creating easy integration and additional revenue opportunities for programmers’ ad sales teams, and improving the TV experience for viewers. We’re also excited to become a key strategic partner for Nielsen in their new cross-media measurement products, and jointly drive towards greater transparency and accuracy in TV streaming measurement.”
This announcement builds on years of close collaboration between Roku and Nielsen. The two companies will enter into a long-term commercial agreement to leverage Total Ad Ratings (TAR) on the Roku platform. Specifically, Roku’s media sales and ad-buying platform, OneView, will natively integrate Nielsen “always on” Digital Ad Ratings (DAR) for advertisers. Roku will also enable publishers to implement Nielsen Digital Content Ratings (DCR).
“The measurement of ads and content on Roku devices will accelerate the path to a single, de-duplicated cross-media currency,” Scott N. Brown, GM, Audience Measurement, Nielsen. “As Roku brings the power of dynamic ad insertion to all forms of TV, we’re excited to help monetize the addressable market by measuring smart TV as a currency, which Nielsen can do at scale.”
The collaboration with Roku will substantially expand the footprint of smart TVs and other devices, nearing 100 million in total, in which Nielsen can enable media sellers and buyers to measure and better monetize addressable advertising.
The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021, subject to customary closing conditions. Upon closing, Roku looks forward to welcoming Nielsen AVA employees and taking ownership of an extensive portfolio of foundational ACR and DAI patents. Roku TV models, the No. 1 selling TV OS in the U.S. in 2020, already include ACR today, and are expected to include DAI soon. Additionally, Roku expects to expand DAI to other TV OEMs over time.
Nielsen Forward Looking Statement
This press release includes information that could constitute forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements include those set forth above relating to the anticipated timing of the closing of the transaction as well as those that may be identified by words such as “will,” “intend,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “should,” “could” and similar expressions. These statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results and events could differ materially from what presently is expected. Factors leading thereto may include, without limitation, the risk that the transaction may not be completed in a timely manner or at all and other specific risk factors that are outlined in our disclosure filings and materials, which you can find on http://www.nielsen.com/investors, such as our 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K reports that have been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Please consult these documents for a more complete understanding of these risks and uncertainties. This list of factors is not intended to be exhaustive. Such forward-looking statements only speak as of the date of this communication, and we assume no obligation to update any written or oral forward-looking statement made by us or on our behalf as a result of new information, future events or other factors, except as required by law.