Ad exchange

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An ad exchange is a sales channel between publishers and ad networks that can also provide aggregated inventory to advertisers. They provide a technology platform that facilitates automated auction based pricing and buying in real-time. Ad exchanges' business models and practices may include features that are similar to those offered by ad networks.

For the purposes of the IAB Networks & Exchanges Quality Assurance Guidelines, the definition of an ad exchange excludes technology platforms that exclusively provide tools that enable direct media buying and selling between exchange participants.