EU Problems Continue For Google; Bravo Wants Second Screen

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War On Big Tech 

The EU’s crusade against US tech firms rages on, according to the WSJ, and in 2015 could stymie Google, Facebook and others from releasing products and holding on to EU web data. Among the investigations being waged by the European Commission is an antitrust study of Google, as well as tax investigations into Amazon and Apple’s fillings. The fervor against US tech firms is fueled by economic competition, said UK competition regulator Alex Chisholm. “The digital giants are blowing a Schumpeterian gale through our economies,” he said last month. Added Jan Philipp Albrecht, a European lawmaker representing Germany’s Green party, “We want to open up opportunities for new competitors to be [in the EU].” 

Bravo Eyes Native 

Bravo and Oxygen Media’s digital chief, Lisa Hsia, tells Beet.TV that Bravo’s business is changing rapidly. Mobile video growth is in the triple digits, and the company is eyeing commerce opportunities. “The holy grail that I’d like to achieve is to build some sort of transactional business on top of the basic advertising and distribution business of Bravo and Oxygen, and I think the second screen will be critical to making that happen.” Hsia added that in 2015 one of Bravo’s main goals is to push into native advertising. “Native advertising is something that we’re very interested in doing and, for us, we’re just beginning down that road,” she said.

HealthCare.gov Tag-sploitation?

HealthCare.gov is collecting data on users that visit the site, and potentially sharing that infromation with third parties, AP reports. The site affirms that no PII is shared externally, but third-party sites embedded on HealthCare.gov may be able to correlate a visit to the site with other Internet activities and build a consumer profile based on that data. Catchpoint Systems CEO Mehdi Daoud was surprised to see third parties like Google’s data-analytics service, Twitter, Facebook and other online ad vendors present on HealthCare.gov. "Personally, I look at this, and I am on a government website, and I don't know what is going on between the government and Facebook, and Google, and Twitter. Why is that there?” Daoudi said.

Metrics Money

Show me the mobile ROI! Brands are looking for better measurement before they shell out more on mobile – and AppsFlyer wants to capitalize on that. The Israeli company plans to use the bulk of a Fidelity-led $15 million Series B round to develop new measurement tools. The rest will go toward international expansion, including offices in San Francisco and Beijing. Total funding for AppsFlyer, which also provides deep-linking services [AdExchanger analysis] now stands at $27.1 million. “In the last two years, advertisers shifted more and more test budgets to mobile,” AppsFlyer CEO Oren Kaniel told AdExchanger. “We expect to see massive mobile ad spend growth in the very near future.” Read more in TechCrunch. 

Digital Ad Spend Accelerates

New data from Strategy Analytics suggests that digital advertising is creeping closer to one-third of 2015’s projected total ad spend, or $52.8 billion of a whopping $187 billion. That puts digital about $30 billion behind TV ads, and makes it the fastest-growing category (at a rate of 13%). “Despite digital’s best efforts, the drop in traditional ad revenues means we’ll see fairly modest growth in overall U.S. ad revenues in 2015 and will have to wait for more significant growth in 2016, courtesy of the U.S. presidential elections and summer Olympics,” writes Strategy Analytics analyst Michael Goodman. TechCrunch has more.

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