Advanced Television

RTL Group creates new ad sales unit

February 17, 2022

Pan-European broadcaster RTL Group is to combine its fully-owned businesses RTL AdConnect, G+J iMS and the media division of Smartclip to create what it says will be an ‘international advertising sales champion’.

The new unit will provide international advertisers simplified access to a portfolio of media brands across TV, digital video, radio/audio, online, mobile and print. Its portfolio will comprise RTL Group’s TV channels, streaming services, radio stations and digital publishing brands, complemented by the advertising inventory of high-quality partners such as ITV in the UK, RAI in Italy, NBC Universal in the US and DPG Media in Belgium.

The combination of RTL AdConnect, G+J iMS and Smartclip’s media division is in line with the three priorities of RTL Group’s strategy: core, growth, and alliances & partnerships. According to RTL, the new unit will be uniquely positioned to fully seize the significant growth opportunities that result from the increased demand from advertisers and agencies for global ad-buying opportunities, cross-media offers and high reach in brand-safe environments. RTL says it will be the only European sales house that can offer advertisers such international cross-media campaigns out of one hand. In addition, the new unit will closely cooperate with RTL Group’s ad-tech services provided by Yospace and the ad-tech division of Smartclip.

“In the growing competition with the global tech platforms, new alliances and partnerships between European media companies have become increasingly important,” stated Thomas Rabe, CEO of RTL Group. “With our new international ad sales unit, we will create a leading monetisation platform that combines scale, transparency and easy access to state-of-the-art advertising technology. RTL AdConnect, G+J iMS and Smartclip’s media division have strong market positions and complement each other perfectly in terms of skills, clients, services and geographical footprint. Our new monetisation platform will be open for all broadcasters and publishers seeking an innovative, customer-friendly alternative to the global tech platforms. I wish Stéphane Coruble, Oliver Vesper and the teams all the best and great success in their new roles.”

Coruble, currently CEO of RTL AdConnect, will lead RTL Group’s new international advertising sales unit as CEO. In this capacity he will report to Matthias Dang, who will become the Chairman of the new unit’s Board, in addition to his role as Co-CEO of RTL Deutschland. Vesper, currently Co-CEO of Smartclip, will become Chief Digital Officer (CDO) and Deputy CEO of the new unit.

Daniel Bischoff, in addition to his current role as Chief Marketing & Operations Officer of RTL AdConnect, will lead the new unit’s Transformation Office, facilitating workstreams and securing information flow to drive the integration of RTL AdConnect, G+J iMS and the media division of Smartclip. André Freiheit, currently Executive Director of G+J iMS, will leave the company by mutual consent. He will advise and support the new unit’s Transformation Office until the end of June 2022.

The new unit’s portfolio will comprise the advertising inventory of more than 150 TV broadcasters, 47 radio stations and 800 digital publishers.

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