Budweiser is ditching the Super Bowl

Hi and welcome to Insider Advertising. I'm senior advertising reporter Lauren Johnson, and here's what's going on:

  • Budweiser ditches the Super Bowl.
  • The media SPACs to watch.
  • Taboola plans to go public.

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YouTube/Budweiser

Budweiser won't run a commercial during the Super Bowl for the first time in 37 years. Instead, it will channel money into boosting vaccine awareness.

  • For the first time in 37 years, Budweiser won't air a Super Bowl ad during the game.
  • Budweiser is typically one of the biggest Super Bowl advertisers and is known for big-budget campaigns like "Puppy Love" and ads with the Budweiser Clydesdales.
  • Budweiser will instead donate funds to increase COVID-19 vaccine awareness.

Read the full story here.

Frederick M. Brown/Getty

SPACs are circling the media sector. Here are 11 high-profile blank-check companies to watch in 2021.

  • A growing number of SPACs are focusing on acquiring media companies and taking them public. 
  • Lara O'Reilly and I identified 11 high-profile SPACs worth watching this year that are led by media vets like Joanna Coles, Ben Lerer, and Charlie Ergen.
  • SPACs have been viewed critically by some as riskier for investors, but they have boomed over the past year.

Read the full story here.

Taboola CEO Adam Singolda.Taboola

Taboola is going public via a SPAC, aiming to raise $545 million to expand its content recommendations to TV, cars, gaming and ecommerce

  • Lara also reported that ad tech firm Taboola plans to go public through a merger with a SPAC, valuing the company at $2.6 billion.
  • The deal is expected to bring in $545 million in cash.
  • Taboola says it intends to use the proceeds to grow into areas including ecommerce, gaming, connected TV, and in-car entertainment.

Read the full story here.

More stories we're reading:

  • Chipotle's CMO reveals why it's running its first Super Bowl ad, how it's taking more advertising in-house, and how it's preparing for the ad targeting clampdown (Business Insider)
  • A Netflix slide deck shows how it's trying to fix lofty problems in personalization like over-inflating a show's popularity and how to measure goals like 'joy' (Business Insider)
  • The studio behind blockbuster 'Despicable Me' series just hired an ex-Beats and Vice exec as CMO (Business Insider)
  • Andreessen Horowitz is not the only VC firm building its own in-house 'media machine', top VCs tell us. (Business Insider)
  • Bernie Sanders' inauguration jacket is selling out as his mittens meme continues to dominate social media (Business Insider)
  • Google says it may have found a privacy-friendly substitute to cookies (Axios)

Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at [email protected] and subscribe to this daily email here.

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