Canadian in-game ad network RapidFire has acquired the in-game advertising technology that IGA Worldwide created. The technology was good for delivering real-time advertisements inside of video games such as those made for the PlayStation 3.
The deal shows just how much the game advertising business has changed in the past six years.
Back in 2008, IGA Worldwide had 70 employees, and it was reaching 30 million gamers on the PC, Mac, Flash games, and the PlayStation 3. But then brand advertising moved into social games on Facebook and on mobile.
By the end of 2011, the New York company had fallen on hard times and was laying off employees. IGA had developed a technology, dubbed the Radial Network, which enables brands and advertisers to reach gamers playing triple-A console, computer, and mobile video games. Ads are streamed in real-time inside of a game’s 3D environment onto objects such as billboards, hoardings, buses, and posters. IGA could slap ads on any object in a virtual world where a gamer was likely to see an advertisement.
The Vancouver-based RapidFire is acquiring Radial Network ad servers and software development kits, and it will replace the preexisting RapidFire in-game ad serving tech. Now RapidFire will be able to do these things: target users based on their location as well as their city; control how many ads are viewed per unique player; deliver ads to gamers playing offline as long as an initial internet connection is made; detail web-based and exported campaign reports; and support both video and animated formats for in-game delivery.
“We’re ecstatic about the deal and what it means for RapidFire’s growth,” said Jordan L. Howard, the 23-year-old founder and CEO of RapidFire. “IGA Worldwide was a pioneer in the in-game advertising industry, and spent many years perfecting their ad serving technology. With the Radial Network(TM) technology we’ll have a much more robust system, and will be able to provide unparalleled service to both our media buying clients and our game developer partners.”
“I am very happy that with Jordan and the RapidFire team, we have found a great successor who has the passion and capacity to bring in-game ads to the next level,” said Christian-Alexander Vry, director at IGA Worldwide.
RapidFire was founded in 2011 and it allows advertisers to target millions of engaged consumers playing video games across a number of platforms.
IGA’s financial backers include GE/NBCU, Intel Capital, Morgenthaler Ventures, Easton Capital, DN Capital, KTB Ventures, Translink Capital, Itochu Technology and Sumitomo/Presidio STX. Altogether, the company had raised nearly $30 million in two rounds. Justin Townsend founded IGA Worldwide in 2004.