The business, Vizio Ads, will allow brands, agencies and advertisers to purchase ad inventory across VIZIO’s SmartCast platform. This includes placements within the launch and discovery environment, partner OTT apps and throughout the platform’s WatchFree service.
Vizio currently has a 17% market share of smart TVs sold in the US.
Vizio founder and CEO William Wang said: “One of the best ways to improve the TV viewing experience is to improve the state of TV advertising. The launch of direct advertising across our TV platform isn’t just good business for us, it’s an investment we’re making to help the industry at large and will benefit the most important part of our business, the viewer at home.”
The company will be based out of New York City and will be helmed by Mike O’Donnell, previously of YuMe and Maxim.
O’Donnell said: “As viewing behaviors shift and the marketplace for connected TV advertising explodes, brands need to find new ways to reach audiences on the biggest screen in the house. A direct-to-TV advertising business not only helps brands find new, more relevant ways to engage with viewers, it gives them peace of mind knowing their OTT ad budget is actually making it to the screen of a TV.”
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