• SpotX Invests in Ad Server SpringServe to Drive OTT/CTV Monetization

    Video ad platform SpotX has made an undisclosed investment in SpringServe, an independent OTT and connected TV ad server, extending an existing partnership. SpotX is owned by RTL Group; it says it reaches 50 million CTV households per month and it acquired server-side ad insertion provider Yospace last year. SpringServe was founded in 2015 and serves publishers and content owners.

    The deal underscores how viewership is moving to OTT and CTV, driving publishers and content owners to seek stronger monetization of every view and manage their inventory in more sophisticated ways across programmatic and direct sold. I reached out to both companies for more details on what the deal will mean for them, the broader market and their respective roadmaps going forward as viewership of OTT and CTV accelerates. Below is what they shared with me:

    Sean Buckley, COO of SpotX said, “SpringServe has done a stellar job building out their platform, which is quite complementary to our capabilities. As OTT adoption continues to grow, we believe combining SpotX’s market-leading programmatic technology with SpringServe’s ad serving solutions will provide material value to joint customers. Together, we are collaborating on a host of new product features that will be both highly valuable and unique to the market. These include notable advancements in managing podded ad delivery, audience-driven ad routing for inventory splits, joint forecasting across programmatic and traditional direct sales, and real-time telemetry shared across both platforms."

    Joe Hirsch, CEO and co-founder of SpringServe said the company is “predominantly a product and engineering company and that SpotX's investment allows us to remain laser focused on our technology in our core area of expertise, developing OTT ad serving that not only drives revenue but also improves the user experience for streamers."

    I asked Joe to explain the specifics of how the companies will collaborate on their product roadmaps and he shared this detailed reply:

    “Early features include improving the ad break overall, better deal id and  programmatic guaranteed support, as well as new forecasting features. The ideal ad break incorporates revenue optimization, monetizing all spots in the pod, while enforcing competitive separation and frequency management. The joint solution tackles these challenges by tightening the telemetry between SpringServe and SpotX ad stacks seamlessly integrating traditional direct sold demand with programmatic deals, guarantees, and public markets.  Through a single bid request, joint solution clients can send an ad request and receive a de-duplicated response to fill either the exact amount of slots or total ad time for a pod.  By leveraging SpringServe's revenue per second optimization, customers can deliver viewer centric outcomes with reduced bounce rates and increased streamer lifetime values.”

    Last week SpotX released new research highlighting how mainstream CTV viewing has become, with 40% of adults using CTV, equal to an estimated reach of 100 million 18+ year olds. Among CTV viewers, 63% watch daily and 94% watch weekly.

    SpotX and SpringServe are sponsors of VideoNuze’s CTV Advertising Summit - Virtual Event on September 21 and 22. Both companies will have executives participating on sessions and be available for Q&A for attendees to learn more about their joint solutions. Registration is complimentary, sign up now!