Why we acquired RedBud: enabling a truly compliant and ethical media ecosystem

Ben Barokas
October 8, 2020

Today, we announced that Sourcepoint has acquired RedBud, an innovative UK-based software technology company which provides privacy-compliance analytics for buyers and sellers of media and data. It’s an exciting development because not only does this acquisition make our privacy compliance management platform a unique offering for the adtech and martech industries, it provides our customers with the visibility required to become even stronger digital citizens and improve performance. 

I wanted to explain a little bit more about why we decided to acquire RedBud. 

How to create ethical experiences 

Years ago, when we first began developing a GDPR compliance solution, it was quickly apparent that data protection compliance would involve a significant amount of nuance. We believed that GDPR and consent-based privacy legislation would be revolutionary for the media ecosystem because the GDPR requirement of “informed consent” was an opportunity to establish fair value exchange. Yet, the legally acceptable means to obtain consent, or to provide the ability to opt-out, vary across geographies and verticals.

As the privacy landscape has evolved and the industry’s awareness has matured, it’s become clear that there is no such thing as binary compliance. Instead, there is nuance and complexity. The laws and their interpretation are constantly evolving; consumer attitudes are shifting. The market needs a deeper understanding of all the different dimensions of privacy experience — for compliance, of course, but also to enable better and more ethical experiences for consumers and the entire ecosystem. 

One threat to creating ethical, compliant experiences is the issue of unwieldy vendor lists. This has become a major issue over time, and today it’s incredibly difficult to isolate the causes of poor website and app performance. This lack of visibility into vendors’ privacy practices exposes companies to additional risks. Our integration of the RedBud technology stack allows us to accelerate vendor assessments and highlight privacy vulnerabilities that can lead to data leakage, non-compliance, and reduce revenue. 

The market is defining new standards

The degrees of privacy compliance means that to truly optimize the consumer privacy experience, ecosystem participants absolutely must have visibility into third-party privacy practices. This is fundamental to reducing legal and security risks and protecting your brand. It is no longer sufficient to ensure that your own privacy practices are compliant; we are responsible for who we work with, and we must assure that all consumer data moves through the ecosystem in a way that’s not only compliant but ethical. 

Yet, understanding the privacy practices of partners is challenging, given both the intricacy of adtech and martech architecture and the dynamic nature of regulatory requirements and industry standards. This is what RedBud’s platform, DIAGNOSE, empowers Sourcepoint to do. 

RedBud co-founders Chloe Grutchfield and Rhys Denny, like Sourcepoint’s co-founders Brian Kane and myself, hail from the world of digital advertising. Like us, they have a deep understanding of the complex ecosystem we operate in, and they are driven by a mission to make it more sustainable — and equitable — for all participants, above all the consumer. 

From our first exposure to their diagnostic technology, we knew it was something that would bring tremendous value to our customers. In fact, we already had a large customer list in common. We shared the same vision of providing expert help that goes beyond just helping to implement a privacy compliance tool; like Sourcepoint, RedBud is dedicated to sharing best practices, staying close to their customers so they can offer truly actionable insights.

If you’re in need of greater visibility into the privacy practices of your vendors, or just want to learn more about the acquisition, please feel free to drop me a line.

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