Facebook bolsters video ad team hiring Cameran Harman as EMEA demand sales head for LiveRail

Facebook has bolstered its video ad team hiring OpenX’s Cameran Harman to the role of head of demand sales, EMEA of LiveRail.

In his new role Harman is responsible for driving growth for LiveRail, which publishers use to sell both guaranteed inventory – sold by their sales teams directly to advertisers – and non-guaranteed inventory programmatically across display, video and mobile.

LiveRail is currently separate to Facebook's Atlas ad platform, and is understood to already plug in to all the main video demand-side platforms (DSPs), across EMEA.

Harman will work with trading desks, agencies and marketers to help unlock the value of using the LiveRail platform, which carries inventory from third-party publishers, The Drum understands.

Previously he was managing director for Europe at ad tech firm OpenX.

Facebook acquired video supply-side platform LiveRail last summer – months after it rolled out its first video-specific ad products to the social network. The platform lets publishers upload their inventory into LiveRail’s system, rather than negotiating deals, which advertisers can then bid on in real time via DSPs.

The buyout firmed up Facebook’s ability to rival Google and AOL on video, with LiveRail already deemed the third biggest video ad server – after Brightroll and Specific Media, and ahead of Google and AOL, according to ComScore.

Harman's appointment comes a few months after Facebook poached Google’s Damian Burns to run global sales for its ad platform Atlas.

Burns was director of global strategic partnerships for Google, where he spearheaded major initiatives around ad tech and data with the largest agencies and advertisers.

At Facebook he is responsible for Atlas’ global revenue and will shape the strategy and operations for the commercial side of the business, The Drum understands.

Marketers have traditionally struggled to prove the bottom-line impact of marketing budgets, and Atlas’ people-based marketing approach uses cross-device ID-based ad serving and measurement, rather than relying on cookies which do not work across mobile, has proved a compelling sell for advertisers. It is this that is understood to be part of the underlying reasons for having prompted his move.

The appointments signal Facebook's ongoing strategy to challenge Google for dominance in the advertising market, having introduced multiple operations including its own internal demand side platform, which have resulted in a media tech stack similar to Google's Doubleclick, and offer advertisers the ability to run programmatic campaigns on Facebook, not just off-site as they can via Atlas and LiveRail.

Facebook declined to comment.

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