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Axel Springer strikes programmatic deal with Inneractive to help turn mobile news app Upday profitable

Axel Springer will monetise traffic through its Upday app

Upday, the mobile news app owned by digital publishing powerhouse Axel Springer, will for the first time monetise its traffic programmatically through a partnership with Innex, Innerative’s global mobile ad exchange.

The personalised news app was developed by Axel Springer as part of an exclusive partnership with Samsung Electronics and is pre-installed on the Samsung S7 and S7-Edge, A5 and A3 across UK, Germany, France and Poland.

The app aggregates news from 1,200 publishers, including The Daily Telegraph, BBC News, Le Figaro, Der Spiegel and Axel Springer publications. The “need to know” content on the app is chosen by a team of local editors, while the “want to know” section is served via an algorithm tailored to individual tastes. The launch of the app came just months after Apple announced its own news platform, Apple News, to provide publishers with a new way of reaching mobile users.

Last month, Axel Springer announced it would expand Upday from four to 16 countries in Europe this year, with new editorial hubs in Milan, Madrid, Amsterdam and Stockholm. As part of the expansion, it will double its editorial team from 25 to 50.

Now, the publisher is looking to make the app profitable by monetising its mobile inventory programmatically via private marketplaces (PMPs) and the open exchange, through a partnership with Innex, Inneractive’s end-to-end platform for the programmatic selling of mobile ads.

Innex supports the programmatic selling of in-app video, native mobile ads, and mobile display.

Aneta Nowobilska, director of advertising at Upday, said: “Considering the serious demand for programmatic buying from brands and agencies across Europe, and a switch from direct to programmatic buying in such countries as UK, we have decided to invest significant efforts into selling our inventory programmatically, both directly to buyers and via the open exchange.

"Since Upday offers a superior user experience through relevant content and non-intrusive ads, we constantly need to strike a balance between maximizing revenue and keeping users happy.

“We chose Inneractive for their solid technology solution, flexibility in the realization of upday’s specific needs and their valuable data insights which allow us to better package our user base and help maximize our value to the advertisers.”

Welby Chen, chief business officer at Inneractive, added: “Providing a highly-personalized, relevant and timely user experience is becoming a competitive differentiator for publishers. We are proud to partner with upday to ensure the most relevant experience to their users and to enable upday’s advertisers to reach their target audiences.”

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Jessica Goodfellow

The Drum's media reporter covering everything from publishing, TV, social media, radio and technology.

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