Sky and Virgin Media in talks over AdSmart deal

18 Apr 2017  |  David Pidgeon 
Sky and Virgin Media in talks over AdSmart deal

Virgin Media is set join Sky's AdSmart in a major deal that, if it goes ahead, will boost the scale of the targeted advertising platform.

According to a report in the Daily Telegraph, industry sources said the pay-TV and broadband rivals were in advanced discussions to add Virgin's 3.7 million homes to the AdSmart network.

Launched in January 2014, Sky AdSmart tailors what is shown in TV ad breaks according to a household's profile and location. Around 1,000 advertisers have run more than 6,000 campaigns via the tech, with many regional advertisers attracted to TV for the first time because of the ability to target households by location.

The tech offers more than 1,200 different attributes to target Sky households and the agency response has been enthusiastic. The tech has won numerous awards, including a Connie in 2014.

In January Sky added the UK's third largest commercial channel, Channel 5, AdSmart, following Comedy Central and MTV.

The deal for Channel 5 to join Sky AdSmart results from an expanded partnership arrangement reached by Sky and Viacom in 2015, which secured carriage for Viacom's networks on Sky's TV platform and extended an existing advertising sales partnership to include Channel 5 and its associated channels.

The planned deal with Virgin Media, which the Telegraph said could be announced this week, marks an improvement in the relationship between the two companies since Liberty Global took control of Virgin Media in 2013.

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