Advertisers From Around the World to Get a Video Advertising Platform

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In September 2018, Comcast® acquired the European satellite company, Sky, for 39 billion dollars, and since then, analysts have asked how the Philadelphia-based telecommunications company could justify the cost of the buyout. Recently, the cable cum fastest internet provider has announced a potential answer to that.

For an uninitiated, NBCUniversal is a media conglomerate owned by Comcast®. Recently, NBCU said it is unifying the advertising services of it with those of Sky and is ramping up digital technology across both companies in a bid to create a universal ad structure.

The move fuses the powers of NBCU and Sky’s targeted advertising platforms, namely “Audience Studio” and “AdSmart” respectively, under the latter name, in order to create a service that allows advertisers to better plan where they place ads and track them across their combined international customer base.

Sky group’s Director of Advanced Advertising, Jamie West told Reuters that, “The strategy is no longer country by country or market by market. It eases the friction of purchasing across NBCUniversal and Sky.”

The expanded services of Sky AdSmart include optimization of the linear spend of advertisers, or advertisements placed with live television, and targeting different segments of consumers who view content on TV or digital platforms. The contextual alignment feature of AdSmart uses AI technologies to determine the type of content on the screen, and automatically integrates it with relevant ads.

The COO of Sky, Andrew Griffith hailed the company’s “suite of advanced advertising tools” as “unlike anything the market has seen before.”

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It is the first joint effort around advertising since the cable operator acquired the satellite giant. Comcast® acquired the underperforming NBCU, also, and turned the company into a veritable media powerhouse. In contrast, Sky is not struggling, and this has prompted experts to question how the Philly-based Telco giant could unlock sufficient value for paying down the debts from its deal. The $39 billion cost itself shows it is one of the best cable deals of recent times in terms of the finance involved.

The announcement concerning AdSmart comes prior to May upfronts, wherein networks pitch their stock to advertisers. The expansion of AdSmart is also coming ahead of NBCU’s launch of a streaming service. It plans to launch the direct-to-consumer video streaming offering next year. The ad-supported offering, packed with NBCU’s content, will also come at no extra cost to existing subscribers alongside a paid option for non-subs.

Integrating with Sky is also a big part of NBCU’s service, with its CEO Steve Burke quoted as saying The Hollywood Reporter that there are “a lot of attractive TV shows,” which the European satellite giant can also bring back home.

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