Buoyed by investor RTL Group, VideoAmp sets its sights on Europe

VideoAmp is expanding to Europe and launching new products.

Video platform VideoAmp, which said it enables advertisers to plan, buy, package and measure the success of campaigns that reach broadcast TV, VOD, OTT, desktop and mobile audiences, opened an office in Amsterdam, making it VideoAmp’s first official presence outside the US.

VideoAmp is backed by $17.2m to date from investors like European entertainment company RTL Group, which led VideoAmp’s $15m Series A round in November 2015. Per the release, additional investors include Anthem Venture Partners, Simon Equity Partners, Third Wave Capital, Wavemaker Partners, ZenShin Capital and Startup Capital Ventures.

VideoAmp said the new office positions the firm within the growing European market. The platform also plans to open an office in the UK later this year or early next, said Chief Business Officer Jay Prasad.

The two-person office in Amsterdam will be led by Abbas Tahzib, head of global commercial development. VideoAmp also has offices in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Chicago.

Per Prasad, Amsterdam has “a very progressive ad market and a very business-friendly climate for US companies.”

And the European market is indeed growing. According to Forrester Research, European video advertising spend will represent half of all EU online display advertising spend by 2020. Further, analytics firm IHS Markit found more than half of all video advertising revenue will be generated programmatically by 2020. And, earlier this year, IAB Europe announced online advertising grew 13.1 per cent to a market value of €36.2bn in 2015, surpassing the €33.3bn European TV market.

Automated Audiences

In addition, VideoAmp said it launched a new product, Automated Audiences, which will allow clients to unify ad inventory from all viewing platforms, execute data-driven campaigns and optimize campaign delivery using real-time analytics.

Media company RTL Nederland, a subsidiary of VideoAmp investor RTL Group, as well as IP Network, a European media group also owned by RTL Group, will be the first to use it.

Per Prasad, the US version of the product will have more focus on OTT, which is “exploding” in the US thanks to devices like Roku, Apple TV, etc., and will launch in Q4.

Calling it “software that helps TV programmers automate some of [their] ad operations when it comes to the idea of selling audiences first,” Prasad said programmers in the US and Europe are interested in buying cross-screen, so there has to be automation of data and how it is allocated across screens.

“We haven’t launched that broadcaster solution in the US market. We chose to launch first in Europe because of our close ties to RTL,” Prasad said, noting the Netherlands is also a smaller market with “more progressive thinking.”

Advanced TV

VideoAmp also said it will roll out its Advanced TV for Advertisers platform, which will allow media traders to drill down on components like viewability, completion rates and on-target audience rates.

IP Network and Cadreon Netherlands, IPG Mediabrand’s programmatic division, are the first customers. IPG Mediabrand is a subsidiary of ad company Interpublic Group, which manages more than $37bn in media assets.

“VideoAmp’s ATV platform gives us the automation and scale we need to deliver cross-border campaigns that can access more than 7 billion ad impressions per month,” said Stéphane Coruble, managing director of IP Network, in a statement. “For example, this fits advertisers in the UK that need to buy in several countries and leverage video and TV inventory or advertisers in Germany who are looking to run in the UK.”

VideoAmp said it is also partnering with video inventory management platform SpotX and multiscreen video and brand advertising platform Smartclip to help aggregate the inventory from RTL and partner programmers in each market to reside within VideoAmp for management by IP Network’s ad operations or agency trading desks.

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