Kantar Continues WPP’s Tech Blitz With BIScience Investment

KantarWPP-owned Kantar Media revealed Tuesday its strategic investment in digital media intelligence firm BIScience.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Kantar and WPP clients will have access to BIScience’s platform, AdClarity, which lets advertisers run competitive benchmarking across 500,000 unique publishers and mobile apps to identify high-performing traffic sources.

“Our footprint as a media intelligence provider was built from our depth of knowledge around television advertising, but that has expanded to radio, outdoor and, now, digital,” said George Pappachen, EVP of strategic and business development for Kantar Media.

BIScience, which houses an R&D center in Israel, employs 30 people and was in a growth phase. It was also hunting for a strategic partner, said Pappachen.

BIScience is consistent with WPP’s investment strategy – it finds companies that are data-driven and horizontally focused. WPP’s string of recent interests include mobile ad platform Medialets, and an investment in TV and set-top-box measurer Rentrak. WPP’s programmatic tech company, Xaxis, recently purchased ActionX and executed a deal for Open AdStream, which gave it stake in AppNexus. 

The company takes a strategic approach to test-driving the platforms in which it invests in. Based on its learnings from BIScience, it will evaluate future tech investments, Pappachen said.

BIScience will immediately benefit Kantar since it will help support new programmatic products the latter brings to market, specifically those that impact the ad-serving chain and provide digital media intelligence.

Kantar recently rolled out a Kayak-esque programmatic email newsletter for planners, curating pricing information and site specs around private marketplaces or tentpole events like the Super Bowl.

“Our work there allowed publishers to let inventory emerge for buyers looking for targeted media,” Pappachen said. “We will continue in that direction, but Kantar’s historic footprint has been intelligence around consumers and media to help our clients make informed decisions. We don’t see this as mutually exclusive” with Kantar’s publisher developments.

Another focus is converging channel and audience-based intelligence, so that TV audience data better informs mobile video, and vice versa.

“The area we are intent on growing is digital,” Pappachen added, “both what it means on its own and certainly what it means in conjunction with television.”


Enjoying this content?

Sign up to be an AdExchanger Member today and get unlimited access to articles like this, plus proprietary data and research, conference discounts, on-demand access to event content, and more!

Join Today!