Blockthrough acquires PageFair, merging two leading anti-adblocking platforms

Blockthrough, which provides software and methods to counter adblocking, has purchased PageFair, which offers similar services.

Deal terms were not made public. In the announcement, the two companies emphasized their complementary differences.

“The combination of Blockthrough’s proven revenue recovery tools and PageFair’s powerful analytics solution creates the industry’s most comprehensive and effective adblock recovery platform,” the firms said.

Continuing for now as separate brands. The newly combined effort will be based in Toronto, and headed by Blockthrough founder and CEO Marty Kratky-Katz. Founded three years ago, Blockthrough provides an adblock recovery platform that it says helps publishers recover about 70 percent of the revenue caused by adblockers.

PageFair, started in 2012, says its adblock measurement and revenue recovery product was the first on the market.

Its well-known Adblocking Report, which covers software that blocks ads on publisher sites, will continue. For the time being, the two companies will keep their separate brands and separate logins, although Blockthrough said PageFair customers will now also have access to Blockthrough’s products.

PageFair’s support of GDPR. In addition to championing efforts and tools to counter adblocking, PageFair has recently been active in providing opinions and materials for compliance with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). For instance, in January it launched Perimeter, a GDPR-compliant ad initiative that focused on delivering ads based on content and broad-based user segments, without using third-party data.

Blockthrough pointed out that it has been influenced by PageFair, noting that the latter’s “exploration into what was driving users to install adblockers helped the entire industry better understand the issue and even helped guide our own philosophy at Blockthrough on how to solve for the adblock revenue loss problem.”

Why you should care. Adblockers are seen by many as a threat to free online content. Estimates vary, but multiple studies conclude that ad blocking costs digital publishers billions in lost ad revenue every year. This merger creates a larger player in this space, offering the possibility of new initiatives that could go beyond blocking blockers.