How Swedish Ad Startup Joinville Bundles Multicultural Audiences

joinville-niklasAd tech companies have been rolling out more self-serve interfaces that aspire to give more transparency and control for ad buyers while introducing a new software licensing revenue stream for the platform owner. Rocket Fuel, Dstillery and Yahoo’s BrightRoll have moved in this direction recently.

But it’s not an option exclusively available to the big programmatic platforms. Consider Joinville, a Stockholm-based company that specializes in multicultural targeting. Joinville will relaunch its audience-buying platform, Mundo, aimed at small and medium-sized businesses and media agencies, to support a self-serve model.

The new user interface will allow marketers and media planners to execute their campaigns directly to a global market inventory of approximately 300 ethnic sites. About 180 beta testers from Australia, Canada, the UK and the US have signed up.

“If you want to target the 2.5 million Turkish people in Germany, we filter that out to make sure that the audience are Turks and they visit Turkish websites,” explains Niklas Nikolaidis, founder, CEO and VP of sales.

With his previous experience at Western Union marketing to an ethnic customer base, the Swedish native started Joinville initially as an ad network with behavioral, demographic and location targeting.

But what started out as negotiating deals with global publishers had by 2011 evolved to plugging into ad exchanges.

“Programmatic allows you to scale faster as you have one entry point. You don’t have to make deals individually with 20 sites, which takes a long time,” Nikolaidis said.

Joinville’s programmatic buying arm helps clients and agencies buy media, execute and optimize campaigns targeting multicultural audiences. Those buys are facilitated through demand-side platforms and individual direct site buys. It also claims to have DMP capabilities in-house.

Joinville works with DSPs such as Adform and Bidtheatre in Europe, and Google DoubleClick Bid Manager and The Trade Desk globally.

Additionally Joinville still runs a publisher network with media owners in the Middle East, Africa and Philippines – along with some UK and US properties.

Since diving into programmatic, Joinville has snapped up close to 750 million impressions aimed at niches like Korean pop stars and ice hockey fans. And last year it purchased about 300 million impressions reaching multicultural segments with the UK, its biggest market.

Most of its clients are in the telecom, finance and travel sectors. They include British Airways, KLM, Norwegian Airlines, Sheraton Hotels and Ritz-Carlton.

And the company has identified some niches of its own, including government agencies such as the Swedish pension board and British military recruiters in search of translators.

Joinville also supports mainstream campaigns, but Nikolaidis prefers niche marketing as the CPMs are often higher.

While Joinville was founded in Sweden, business from the Nordic region comprises just 15% of its volume. This is due to a smaller migrant population in Sweden, at 1.5 million, compared to the UK’s 8 million migrants. Britain is also the most matured market in Europe for programmatic buying as clients there are savvier than those in the Nordics, Nikolaidis noted.

Meanwhile, Joinville has picked up agency business in North America. Revenue grew 150% last year, with much of the new demand coming from New York and California.

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