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dMarc Founders Quit Google; Could YouTube Guys Be Next?


Mediapost is reporting that the founders of dMarc, the radio advertising company acquired by Google last year, have resigned.

It appears the recent suggestions that Google and dMarc were not seeing eye-to-eye, on the best approach for selling radio ads, was more than just a small road-bump. Add to that, the fact that dMarc was unlikely to see the full $1.13 billion payout, as part of the acquisition structure, and you can see why Chad and Ryan Steelberg decided to take their $102 million in cash, and run.

…the two companies apparently differed over the need for a “human touch” in the sales process. Although dMarc was a pioneer in automated radio ad sales, the company still employed human beings to explain the dMarc system to prospective customers and tutor those who signed up. As Google began integrating dMarc’s system into Google AdWords, it pushed to limit the number of product reps. dMarc executives in turn blamed this policy for their sluggish revenue results.

All eyes now turn to YouTube, as Google tries to figure out how to best monetize it’s viewers. Was the recent registration to sell stock, by the YouTube founders, a sign they’re prepping, just in case things go the same way as dMarc?

  • rcjordan

    For some reason, the “brain suck” scene from “Starship Troopers” comes to mind.

  • blogMeTender

    It’s interesting that Chad Hurley and Steve Chen who founded YouTube also worked for PayPal. (That’s where they first met.)

    If you read the last chapter of The PayPal Wars, you’ll see that after eBay bought PayPal, several of PayPal’s top officers left, including Peter Thiel.

    So much evidence is available how mergers in general don’t work, especially because of differences in corporate culture. When you know that reality, can you really fault somebody who takes the money and runs?

  • iknowbetter

    The Steelbergs invented the “human touch” aspect of their “disagreement” with Google. It doesn’t take many conversations with either brother to realize that they don’t know enough about the system dMarc bought from another broadcasting company to want to drive them out. Google continues to embrace every other member of the original dMarc and pre-dMarc team.