Rocket Fuel Buys X+1 For $230 Million

In Wake of Q2 Earnings Report, Share Price Drops in After-Hour Trading

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Automated ad-buying platform Rocket Fuel has acquired X+1, an ad-tech firm offering data-management capabilities and an ad-buying tool of its own, for approximately $230 million, the company announced today.

The acquisition was announced the same days as the company's Q2 earnings report. Rocket Fuel beat earnings estimates, reporting a loss of 11 cents per share on $92.6 million in revenue, better than the expected 22 cents per share loss on revenue of $90.22 million. But Wall Street wasn't impressed. The company's stock dropped over 20% in after hours trading.

The X+1 acquisition is aimed at bringing a core component of the programmatic ad buy, data management, under Rocket Fuel's wing. The company will now try to sell customers on the combination of its data management and ad-buying capabilities together as a package.

"We know that a lot of customers are looking for broad comprehensive solutions that gives them one single unified platform for managing, understanding and deploying their data," said Rocket Fuel president Richard Frankel in an interview with Ad Age. "Our customers have been asking us for this so when the customers ask for it, you think maybe it's not a bad idea."

After a successful IPO in September, Rocket Fuel's stock has been on a roller coaster ride, rising up near $70 dollars before falling back to earth, and then falling some more.

For X+1, the deal brings an exit after months of steady industry chatter about the fifteen year old ad-tech company's efforts to sell.

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