- Twitter has taken a minority stake in digital ad firm Aleph Group, which is the social media site's exclusive advertising partner in 74 countries where it doesn't have a local presence, per a press release. Financial terms were not disclosed.
- With its investment, Twitter hopes to support Aleph's goal of ramping up the digital ecosystem in emerging nations to create economic growth. Aleph wants to build an education tech platform for digital advertising that will train and certify more than 50,000 professionals in 90 countries on five continents.
- Last year, Aleph accepted an investment by private equity firm CVC Capital Partners for $470 million, which valued the company at $2 billion. Aleph has indicated plans to go public this year.
Last month, the social media world was taken by surprise when Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey resigned and was replaced by Parag Agrawal, the company's chief technology officer. The news was seen as a sign that Twitter would make just the kind of investment it now has in order to make it relevant to younger consumers and, therefore, advertisers. Twitter in the past has been criticized for its lack of big innovations.
Aleph is focused on building digital advertising expertise around the world, which could be important as the global ad marketplace experiences robust growth despite supply chain disruptions and a user privacy clampdown by Apple that many feared would disrupt mobile advertising. Twitter, which has a significantly smaller share of global social media spend compared to Meta (formerly Facebook), looks to be positioning itself to support the broader marketplace trends with its investment in Aleph while potentially grabbing a bigger share of spend. Advertising sales make up the majority of Twitter's revenue. In Q3 2021, Twitter's ad revenue totaled $1.1 million, up 8% from the previous quarter and up 41% year-over-year.
Twitter already relies on Aleph's offerings, IMS Internet Media Services, Httpool and AdDynamo to be in markets where it doesn't have a local presence. Aleph helps Twitter monetize its user base in emerging countries by providing dedicated local sales and support teams, proprietary technology to help advertisers maximize their Twitter investments, and a robust cross-border payment solution that helps Twitter efficiently generate incremental revenue in non-core markets.
Among its customers, Aleph counts Meta, Spotify and LinkedIn.
At the time of the investment by CVC Capital Partners, Aleph CEO Gastón Taratuta said the company had not been looking for new capital but was interested in CVC because of its global footprint.
Taratuta in a statement called the Twitter investment an endorsement of its efforts to educate a new generation of digital professionals.
"Access to quality education is key to success and growth, and we are committed to ensuring that local advertisers around the world have the access and education they need to become digital experts, unlocking the power of digital media for their communities," Taratuta said.