Ad tech had a mixed year.

Venture capital for ad tech slowed down, while mergers and acquisitions rose. And as fake news became one of the hottest topics in the media industry, it became more apparent than ever that some ad tech companies profited from proliferating fake news while others banked on preventing ads from reaching fake-news sites. But within the diverse industry of ad tech, several companies stood out, for better or for worse.

Here are the biggest winners and losers in ad tech this year.

Measurement and verification companies
The rise of fake news provided brand safety vendors with an opportunity for some good PR. As dubious content spread rapidly and Facebook continued having measurement errors, companies like Moat, Trust Metrics and Integral Ad Science became more in demand.

“Measurement and verification companies should be having no problem finding interested customers,” said Eric Franchi, co-founder of ad tech firm Undertone.

The tech network, which publishes Top Ten Reviews and Live Science, expanded its data science team in an effort to improve its commerce strategy. It has also been an early adopter of server-to-server connections, and developed a new reader-engagement score that is meant to replace the timeworn pageview.

“Purch is really one of the few media companies who are investing in proprietary ad tech, and they’re doing it right,” said Todd Garland, CEO of digital ad network BuySellAds.

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