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New Business Bulletin: Bloomberg Media, Brand Metrics, Starcom and more

Bloomberg Media and Twitter have announced a global multiyear renewal of their partnership starting in January 2022, covering all major media markets across North America, EMEA, LATAM and APAC. The partnership features new projects that combine Bloomberg News’s credibility in cryptocurrency content with Twitter’s immediacy and transparency to help consumers navigate this evolving, saturated market. Bloomberg’s editorial team will combine its original reporting and analysis with Twitter’s data. Building on the connection that Bloomberg’s @Business, @Climate, @Luxury, @Technology and other handles have created with people on Twitter, the @Crypto handle is a cutting-edge hub for investor news on the digital currency market’s rapid pace of change. In addition to the new @Crypto series, Bloomberg Media will launch additional new video franchises on Twitter in 2022 and 2023. They will also host multiple Twitter Spaces every week, expand engagement on Spaces across international markets and continue to stream its premiere live events internationally, including Bloomberg New Economy Forum and more.

Global technology company, Brand Metrics, which works with publishers to demonstrate the effectiveness of digital advertising, has announced it is to continue its longstanding partnership with the Financial Times (FT), following a highly successful collaboration for several years and a subsequent review of partners undertaken by the premium publisher. The FT has been working in partnership with Brand Metrics for a number of years now, in a collaboration that has seen huge benefits on both sides. In 2022,  the publisher will be working with Brand Metrics exclusively for all its brand measurement requirements.

Starcom has launched a new report titled Future Tensions in the Metaverse with five podcast episodes exploring what the Metaverse is, how it might impact brands and why it is of interest to the media industry. The report aims to provide clarity about the Metaverse, understand the tensions that will exist for consumers in these new spaces, as well as what roles and responsibilities will be needed by our industry and by advertisers as the metaverse evolves into our everyday lives. Using forum discussions, desk research via reports and research from institutions, analysis platforms for social media and published content, and interviews with various industry experts, Starcom’s research has pointed to four important tensions in how metaverse virtual realities could change the human experience: Social vs. Solo: how the metaverse smashes 1st and 3rd spaces together, Truth vs. Design: how the metaverse can tell you anything you want to hear, Access vs. Ownership: how in metaverse spaces, actions, as well as objects, can be owned, Protection vs. Freedom: how the metaverse is organic but needs regulation. As a way of bringing this report to life, Starcom has launched five 30-minute podcast episodes to delve into each of these themes in more detail. The first episode sees Starcom Insights Director Heather Dansie and Publicis Media’s Insights Director, Scott Thompson, discuss first and foremost what the metaverse is and why it’s of interest to the media industry.

Forghetti has announced an exclusive cyber security agreement with CSL Mobile Limited, a mobile communications service provider, to equip csl and 1O1O customers with the innovative Forghetti password management solution. This unique application will be made available free of charge to all csl and 1O1O customers subscribing to 5G service plans. The agreement between Forghetti and CSL Mobile ensures all csl/1O1O’s 5G subscribers are safeguarded by the best possible password management practice. Each and every Forghetti password is generated by a drawn doodle. It’s unique, complex and, most importantly, NOT stored. 

Following rapid growth in 2021 addressing the needs of an evolving creative landscape, GENIE has announced the next stage of its growth with the launch of GENIE.OS, a brand new talent management system that will further facilitate fast, flexible access to a pool of best-in-class talent across the creative spectrum. After the success of its flagship pay-as-you-go automated talent agent, GENIE.OS also now offers companies full oversight and control of managing their freelance talent through a competitive subscription pricing model, allowing them to scale up and down at speed in the ever-evolving creative landscape. GENIE.OS is currently being used by an array of major creative agencies and brands alike, including the likes of Saatchi & Saatchi (Publicis Groupe), Virtue (VICE), BMB, 72 & Sunny and Berghaus – with access to over 1,200 best-in-class talent members famous for work such as the Sainsburys 1914 Christmas Truce, H&M Beckham, Lucozade Condition Zone, and much more. The quickest time from brief-to-hire was just 7 minutes with Virtue (VICE).

Semrush, an online visibility management SaaS platform, has announced the acquisition of Marketing and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) training platform Backlinko. Backlinko was established in 2012 and is dedicated to actionable content and video marketing, link building, social media, and SEO training. This includes an extensive set of educational resources including video and text-based content along with widgets, code, and proprietary SEO techniques. The desire to acquire Backlinko was fueled by Semrush’s commitment to inspiring both the current and next generation of digital marketers. Today’s marketers require not only the highest quality tools, they also need best-in-class training from real experts and practitioners in the field. On joining Semrush, Backlinko founder Brian Dean and his colleagues will continue to grow the Semrush community by creating and curating original content for the Semrush Academy.

Bolton-headquartered EdTech firm, Near-Life, has successfully launched a ground-breaking immersive learning programme for Greater Manchester Police (GMP) that will support their work tackling Child Sexual Exploitation and protect some of the most vulnerable members of society. The pilot was awarded £241,000 in funding from Innovate UK in November 2020 to accelerate the development of an interactive learning programme tailored to complex investigations – an area of police training identified as challenging and of the greatest need. Working in partnership with GMP, Near-Life has developed a comprehensive course built using its Near-Life CREATOR+ interactive video software, which uses cutting edge gamified simulation technology. Learners have the opportunity to take on the roles of both officer and investigator in a simulated Child Sexual Exploitation case. The technology will better track performance and learning based outcomes, supporting an improved knowledge base that will allow GMP to share best practice examples of how digital simulations can support learning and training for complex investigations.

Chargebee, the subscription management platform, has announced it has acquired customer retention platform Brightback, combining two best-in-class platforms to maximise revenue growth capabilities for global customers. On the heels of the recent acquisition of RevLock and global expansion, this acquisition signals rapid growth for industry leader Chargebee. Brightback’s team will join Chargebee in various offices and remotely across the world, including the addition of Brightback’s executive team to Chargebee’s leadership team.

Audience Collective, the ambitious, insight-driven group of specialist agencies, has announced its expansion into the United States. Furthering its rapid growth plans, the brand-new US division cements Audience Collective’s international ambitions, giving them a foothold in the States. Operating from its Los Angeles headquarters the US offering, which focuses specifically on building a client base of brand and marketing clients. Nicole Levings will be leading the charge from the Managing Director’s chair. Levings, who started her advertising career in the UK, is supported by Olivia Nicholson who will spearhead the client services offering, as well as sales and marketing support to drive the growth. With the LA HQ having already secured clients within the US, Audience Collective is looking to build its expertise nationwide. The plan is to embark on an aggressive ‘buy and build’ strategy to replicate the full-service offering that is already provided in the UK. The acquisition strategy will concentrate the team’s efforts on integrated media, market research and insights, design and build, social media and media relations. The aim is to have a presence on the West and East Coasts to the Mid-West and the Central region. Ultimately, the aim is to create a group of specialists that will allow the Collective to capitalise on the incredible potential that the US market has to offer.

Kantar, the data-driven analytics and brand consulting company has announced the acquisition of all software intellectual property (IP) and the development team from MindIT, the Bologna, Italy-based artificial intelligence (AI) company. MindIT, a spin-out from Bologna University, is a machine learning algorithms and AI specialist whose solutions have formed part of Kantar’s Trade Optimisation Revenue Management offer since 2018. The team will join Kantar’s Trade Optimisation SaaS business to advance their vision for an integrated, end-to-end Revenue Growth Management (RGM) platform.

Sensei, the European provider of autonomous stores, has partnered with global, edge-to-cloud company Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) as its original equipment manufacturer. Sensei technology is digitalising store operations, making it significantly more efficient. Retailers can improve the shopper’s in-store experience by providing a seamless, scan-free, checkoutless, and queue free shopping experience. Using HPE ProLiant servers’ innovative and sophisticated technology, Sensei is able to offer retailers state-of-the-art computing technology for real time consumer insights as well as daily store management and invoicing, delivered affordably and at speed. Collaborating with HPE ensures that Sensei’s research and development computing lab, used to run its AI and ML models, are equipped with the most advanced technology from HPE ProLiant DL380 servers – containing GPUs to process image data and analysis of supermarket goods. This in turn, helps Sensei to remain at the forefront of revolutionising the retail sector, driving innovation in AI and autonomous retail technology.

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