Editor’s note: This email from a UK DoubleClick client just landed in our inbox. The sender asked us to remove his name and email address.We have seen in the past how many mergers and acquisitions in digital media have been disasters.
I submit to you that the same is happening today with Google (GOOG) and Doubleclick.
My company is a large UK customer of DFA and Dart search. We have seen Google cull large parts of account management and billing at DoubleClick. The atmosphere at DoubleClick in these functions is bleak and service to the clients is woeful. Many very large advertisers and publishers for DFA and DFP have been told by DoubleClick that they will not service their accounts any more and that to stay using these services they will have to look to a third party (Acceleration, a south African company, mainly) to continue using them.
I have also seen the roadmaps for DFA, DFP and Dart search; all of them are bleak, barely worth mentioning. The net result is that almost all DoubleClick’s customers that I know of are in the process of moving their business elsewhere (it takes time). There will also be no new business to replace it as no one at the company is out pitching for said business and the end result being a nosedive in DoubleCick business.
If we accept that DoubleClick is dying, I would then like to think about why Google is allowing this to happen?
I can think of four possible explanations:
- Google mainly bought DoubleClick for the Ad Exchange business.
- Google mainly bought DoubleCick for its valuable relationships and data.
- Google thought DoubleClick could disrupt its display growth plans and wanted to kill it.
- Google is just as incompetent at M&A as Yahoo and AOL.
I’d discount the first option. The Dart exchange was not even released when the deal went through and the product released now is almost entirely Google technology. So if Google really had this as the intention, we are back to a case of dealing with incompetence.
Not sure about the second option either. If Google bought DoubleClick for relationships and data, why is it allowing those relationships to whither so fast?
That leaves me thinking that either Google has been massively incompetent in the DoubleClick saga, or that it bought the company only to close down a potentially disruptive influence. Either way, I don’t think its good news for DoubleClicks clients or employees.
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