Rubicon Project and Telaria to Cut at Least 8% of Staff Following Acquisition

Cost-savings measures after the deal have accelerated due to the pandemic

rubicon project and telaria logos
Rubicon Project completed its deal for Telaria on April 1. - Credit by Rubicon, Telaria
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Rubicon Project and Telaria, which will report Q1 earnings for the first time as a combined company on Wednesday, are laying off at least 8% of staff, according to multiple sources familiar with the situation.

When Rubicon announced its acquisition of Telaria last December, it expected to create cost synergies, or savings, between $15-$20 million. However, those projections were made before the ad-tech ecosystem felt the financial hit of the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, the combined company took deeper cost-savings measures, including cutting more staff than anticipated, according to sources.

The company, which has yet to announce a new name, completed its merger in early April to become advertising’s largest independent supply-side platform (SSP). Upon completion of the deal Mark Zagorski, former Telaria CEO and COO of the combined entity, said to expect redundancies in areas such as accounting and finance.

The combined company employs more than 600 people, according to LinkedIn data. The redundant staff is reportedly expected to work through May 15.

A Rubicon spokesperson declined to comment, citing a quiet period before the company reports its first-quarter earnings after Wednesday’s closing bell.

Rubicon shareholders took a 52.9% control of the company upon completion of the deal, with Rubicon CEO Michael Barrett leading the combined company. Rubicon was one of the most widely used SSPs pre-Telaria acquisition. Now it’s trying to cut costs and gain market share during a time when consumer habits are changing and supply path optimization is accelerating.

Rubicon has been working to futureproof itself. In 2017, it acquired nToggle, a technology to help lower infrastructure costs by reducing bid density. Now it’s purchased Telaria for its technology and business relationships in connected TV, a medium eMarketer expects to reach $8.9 billion in ad spend by the end of 2020.


Andrew Blustein is a programmatic reporter at Adweek.
Publish date: May 5, 2020 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/rubicon-project-telaria-cut-staff-acquisition/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT