Google to acquire mobile advertising firm InMobi: report

According to reports, the tech giant is considering the purchase of InMobi to strengthen its position in mobile advertising.

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Google is considering the potential acquisition of InMobi in order to boost the firm's offerings in the mobile advertising industry.

Unnamed sources told Reuters the online search engine giant is in "early talks" to buy the startup, in a deal which could be worth up to $1 billion.

InMobi is a startup based in Bangalore, India. Founded in 2007, the company offers mobile customer engagement platforms which leverage mobile advertising to grow customer bases through consumer behavior and analytics.

The firm recently launched Appographic Targeting, an app-interest based audience targeting service designed to help marketers promote apps based on user interests. InMobi says the service potentially delivers up to 72 percent higher app install rates, 26 percent lower cost-per-install (CPI) and 30 percent higher value on the lifetime of app promotion campaigns.

Investors include Soft Bank and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. The startup caters for clients including Yamaha, Microsoft, Adidas and Macy.

The publication says that as the talks are in early stages, no terms or conditions of a potential buyout have yet been set.

According to local publication The Economic Times, the deal is part of Google's plan to take on Facebook in mobile advertising. Talks originally began in September last year, later faded away, but have now resumed. An unnamed source said:

"They are now talking formally, the next step is a technology due diligence."

Google is taking on the mobile realm with a vengeance this year. In February, the tech giant said it would begin to allow paid search ads in the Google Play app store, which opens up potential new revenue streams for the company through mobile advertising. To begin with, paid search apps will focus on app discovery and promotion -- making InMobi's potential acquisition a great fit.

InMobi is not the only India-based startup to be snapped up by a well-known technology firm of late. In January this year, Twitter acquired mobile marketer ZipDial, taking on the company's mobile platform which connects offline and online content across networks via SMS messaging, voice, Web and mobile apps.

Read on: In the enterprise

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