A recent addition to the Digital Place Based Advertising Association’s (DPAA) membership ranks was IPONWEB, a global technology company. IPONWEB is at the forefront of the increasing use programmatic in the digital out of home industry, helping DOOH networks develop new revenue streams.
Freelance reporter Mel Stott chatted recently with Brian Golbere, IPONWEB’s GM of Emerging Technology, about the company.
Please tell us about IPONWEB’s business and its role in the digital out-of-home ecosystem.
IPONWEB is a global technology company that specializes in programmatic, RTB and machine learning. We started in digital advertising over 12 years ago, applying powerful algorithmic and data-driven decisioning to digital display, video and mobile inventory being traded in real-time. We quickly realized that the same underlying technology frameworks apply equally well to other media channels, including TV and DOOH.
Today, we work with DOOH media owners who are looking to open new revenue streams by tapping into digital budgets and monetizing unsold inventory at the screen and audience level via programmatic channels. We partner closely with these publishers to understand their unique business requirements, legacy systems and data assets to engineer 1st-party programmatic platforms tailor-fit to achieve their goals.
When was the company founded?
IPONWEB was founded in 2001, with a focus on providing software development services for the legal and Intellectual Property (IP) sectors (which is actually where our name comes from).
Our focus shifted to digital advertising and programmatic specifically around 2005, when we were chosen as the key technology partner in the design, delivery and evolution of Right Media, the first advertising exchange. Since then, we’ve built more than 150 real-time media trading systems for both supply and demand partners across digital, TV and DOOH.
Borne out of our experiences building and operating these platforms, we launched BidSwitch in 2014, which provides a global infrastructure that facilitates and enables connectivity and trading efficiencies between buyers and sellers in the RTB space.
What is the geographic scope of your operation?
IPONWEB operates globally, currently serving clients in 17 countries across North America, Europe-Middle East-Africa, and Asia-Pacific. We also have business offices in London, New York, San Francisco and Singapore, with engineering teams concentrated in Moscow and Berlin.
Can you estimate how many programmatic transactions you facilitate each day?
Through BidSwitch, we process more than 300 billion bid requests every day – across all regions and media channels. That nets out to more than 9 trillion every month.
What do you see as the main advantages of programmatic?
Programmatic has numerous advantages, which differ slightly depending on the type of media you’re talking about. In the DOOH space, programmatic enables audience buying not only at the screen level, but also for an individual play, giving advertisers greater access to the audiences they want and helping publishers maximize yield.
Programmatic also opens up a publisher’s inventory to new ad budgets, namely from digital buyers who are clamoring for high-quality, fraud-free, visually impactful inventory, which DOOH offers.
How much of DOOH media is transacted programmatically today, and what do you think this percentage will be 3-5 years from now?
The size of the programmatic DOOH market is relatively small today. Of the roughly $3 billion that was spent on DOOH in the US last year, the vast majority of that was done via direct deals, leaving very little inventory to be transacted programmatically.
As DOOH inventory increases, though, both through the addition of new screens and the digitization of older screens, we’d expect to see programmatic make up a bigger piece of the pie.
Adding to the situation, we have a market where digital demand for high-quality, fraud-free video inventory is outpacing supply, which will push digital buyers to look outside of traditional digital channels to satisfy advertiser demand, and programmatic DOOH will be one of the main benefactors of this shift.
What were your reasons for joining DPAA?
The DPAA is doing a great job moving the DOOH industry to embrace and adopt new technologies, standards and best practices to keep pace with changing consumer behaviors and advertiser demand. As leaders in programmatic, IPONWEB wanted to help the DPAA in its mission to educate the market on the benefits of programmatic in DOOH and work together to accelerate its adoption by both buyers and sellers.
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