One interesting nugget from Snap’s IPO filing: The company paid out about $58 million in revenue-sharing payments to publisher partners in 2016. That’s up from about $10 million in payments in 2015.
(For context, Snap’s total revenue was $404 million last year, so those payouts represented almost 15 percent.)
Snap works with publishers — such as BuzzFeed, Vox Media (which owns this website), the Daily Mail, Bleacher Report and, as of today, the New York Times — to supply channels for its Discover product, under revenue-sharing agreements.
Both parties are typically able to sell ads to display within the channels, but Snap sells most of them itself: Last year, 91 percent of the company’s recorded ad revenue was “Snap-sold,” versus about 9 percent partner-sold, according to its IPO filing.
(It’s worth noting that Snap reports Snap-sold revenue on a gross basis versus partner-sold revenue on a net basis, so it’s not a complete picture of the gross Snapchat-ad-sales market.)
Such arrangements are typical for companies that run ad platforms for publishers. Google, for example, pays out about 20 percent of its total advertising revenue as so-called traffic acquisition cost.