Home Ad Exchange News Xandr’s POV On The CTV Ad Server Space; Are Sunnier Times Ahead For News?

Xandr’s POV On The CTV Ad Server Space; Are Sunnier Times Ahead For News?


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The Suite Smell Of Success

Xandr CTO Ben John and EVP and GM Mike Welch recently shed some light on how Xandr plans to win in the CTV and video ad-serving market, which is essentially new to Xandr and a capability it’s building for the Netflix ad-selling partnership.

One important factor is Xandr’s full-suite tech (buy side, sell side and ad server), Welch says in a recent interview with Marketecture. It’s “the single reason Netflix chose us,” he tells Marketecture Founder and CEO Ari Paparo.

Although rumors swirled this summer about Netflix’s potential suitors, Welch argues it was clear to Microsoft and its ad biz folks that Netflix wanted a DSP, SSP and ad server package. Realistically, only a very small handful of companies fit that bill.

At one point in the interview, Welch makes the observation that CTV ad serving “isn’t so complicated” compared to the extraneous “bells and whistles” of legacy broadcast video ad servers.

Paparo notes that FreeWheel, where he was formerly head of strategy and partnerships after the Beeswax acquisition, is the 400-pound gorilla in the room that’s wearing all those bells and whistles.

Although Xandr’s Netflix account win is a coup, Paparo appears dubious that a video ad server might be so easily spun up in the brief span of a year. 

Turning A Nonprofit Profit

Local newspapers are in crisis mode, with 360 US papers shutting down in the past three years alone.

Many newspapers adopted paywalls and subscriptions to try and save themselves, but now some, including the Chicago Sun-Times, are walking back their subscription plans.


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The Sun-Times is reverting to an open site for anyone who shares an email address, which should (hopefully for its sake) mean an increase in ad revenue. The paper, which became a nonprofit earlier this year, will also solicit donations, according to a release.

The Sun-Times took on nonprofit status in January when it joined Chicago Public Media, a nonprofit spearheaded by the regional affiliate of NPR. Concurrent to that arrangement, Chicago Public Media raised $61 million in charitable donations with the intention of growing local journalism in Chicago.

The Sun-Times is making an interesting trade-off here – and not just ad revenue in exchange for ditching its paywall. Although subscriptions can be a revenue driver, they also cost a lot of money to promote while simultaneously diminishing a publisher’s potential readership. Sun-Times stories will go further on social platforms and reach more readers if the site is free and open.

Can We Astro-Not With This Already

You know how everything’s an ad network nowadays? 

Apparently, satellite manufacturers received the memo … or at least read a feasibility study produced by researchers at the Russian Skoltech University, which claims that billboards of satellites would be profitable, Gizmodo reports.

Stick with us. A group of satellites would launch into space in the form of a logo or brand message and hover for spells of time above dense cities as the satellite cluster circles the Earth. 

The “ads” would only appear when they have the best chance of being seen, as in at dusk. (Viewability metrics in the sky!) They could also claim massive reach, not to mention the shock value.

The satellite idea isn’t totally new. Pepsi briefly evaluated and then ditched the idea of putting bright satellites in near orbit to form a fake constellation for a brand launch in 2019. SpaceX, the spacecraft manufacturer led by Elon Musk, also has a satellite-based billboard, which, to be fair, is a marketing stunt and not an ad revenue grab.

A single mission would cost $65 million. (Can someone figure out the CPM on that, please?) But that mission could last for months and would end up turning a multimillion dollar profit, according to the paper, which, and we can’t make this up, is titled “Ad-block this: Space advertisers ready to display commercials in the sky.”

But Wait, There’s More!

Permutive teams up with PubMatic to make first-party publisher data more accessible to advertisers. [Adweek]

Prominent influencer Bethenny Frankel sues TikTok over ads she says misused her image. [WaPo]

There may be a bug lurking within the Google Analytics and Google Search Console integration. [Search Engine Roundtable]

The IAB Tech Lab announces that the Open Measurement SDK is available for CTV. [release]

Meet live chat, pixel helper and seven other Reddit Ads Manager updates. [Search Engine Land]

You’re Hired!

Publica names Steph Miller as its commercial director for EMEA. [release]

Outbrain appoints longtime vet Alexander Erlmeier as CRO. [release]

Fox Entertainment names Rob Wade its new CEO. [Deadline]

Former Google public policy lead Richard Whitt joins Twilio as SVP for government relations and public policy. [LinkedIn]

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