blinkx, the video search engine, has bought Burst Media for $30m amid claims the service can now deliver targeted, interactive online video advertising to a TV-like reach.
Burst Media focuses on providing click-through and banner ads on UK and US "long tail" or specialist publishing sites, such as www.mydish.co.uk, the recipe website, and www.streetmap.co.uk, the UK street and road map site.
blinkx intends to exploit Burst Media’s network of specialist online publishers, which recorded 20.98 million viewers across its partnerships in January this year and was ranked the 13th largest UK ad network, according to ComStore.
blinkx will be able to target online video ads from its own network to Burst Media’s specialist partnerships and display relevant advertising content for consumers visiting the niche publisher pages.
blinkx, which partners with media companies such as the BBC and Lonely Planet to provide a specialist video search service, intends to increase the audience of its 35 million viral ads to rival that of a prime-time TV audience through the acquisition.
Suranga Chandratillake, chief executive, blinkx, said: "Our acquisition of Burst Media comes at an important time for the online advertising industry, where 69% of marketers and 55% of agencies plan to increase digital video advertising in the next 12 months according to the IAB, and we believe that what we can now offer them in terms of audience scale, targeting and branding opportunities is unrivaled in online video.
"The $1bn+ online video ad market is forecast to rise 22% as marketers continue to shift TV dollars online, recognizing the sophisticated targeting and high engagement levels of this platform.
"With the acquisition of Burst Media, we are uniquely positioned to deliver TV-like reach, in addition to the targeting, interactivity and cost benefits of online video advertising."