February 21, 2012 – SAS announced a deal to acquire aiMatch, a cloud-based advertisement sales and management provider.

The North Carolina business analytics provider stated in a news release that the buy would give more offerings specific to publishers in the digital ad industry, an area that SAS noted that it expects to grow by tens of billions of dollars in the coming years. Jim Davis, SAS SVP and CMO, said in a news release that his vendor’s analytics offerings would work toward enabling real-time, purpose-built analytics for ad inventory and optimization in aiMatch’s cloud-based ad server technology. That tie-in with analytics and ad inventory is lacking and makes it more difficult for publishers to determine ad pricing, audiences and inventory, said Davis.  

Joe Stanhope, Senior Analyst at Forrester Research, says the acquisition brings some new and specific functionality for SAS, like features for inventory management and an ad server toolset to build on, as well as aiMatch’s ad industry on-demand know-how.

“Many of SAS’s offerings are traditionally on-premise deployments, so this acquisition gives them more expertise in SaaS delivery, which should fuel product development and the ability to deliver solutions across a variety of deployment methods to meet client needs,” Stanhope says.

A SAS spokesperson told Information Management in an email that SAS would continue support for aiMatch’s offerings, which it plans to integrate into its existing operations as a complement to its SAS Customer Intelligence suite for marketing management.

Based in Raleigh, N.C. with an office in London, aiMatch was founded in 2010 by two executives with experience at another tech ad sales provider, Accipiter, one of whom also worked in advertising for Microsoft. Customers include APN Digital, Photobucket and Pinger, according to its website. A SAS spokesperson said that all aiMatch staff would be retained. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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