JCDecaux JV Signs Chicago’s First Large Digital Billboard Network Contract

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

JCDecaux, worldwide outdoor advertising company, announced Wednesday that its newly formed joint venture with Interstate Outdoor Advertising and its sister company, Foster Interstate, has signed a 20-year contract with the City of Chicago to operate 34 large (up to 1,200 sq. ft.) digital billboards with 60 LED-display panels along Chicago City expressways.

logo Interstate Outdoor Advertising, L.P.The 20-year contract is expected to generate approximately $700 million in advertising revenues.

The Chicago City Digital Network is the US’s first public-private partnership to create a large-scale digital billboard network on public land.

It will serve as a communications broadcast system for emergencies, weather and traffic alerts, safety issues and cultural events while at the same time generating revenue for the City and providing advertisers the best locations along expressways to display messages on a real-time basis.

Rahm Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago ays, “While the City continues to crack down on illegal billboards, we are creating a billboard network with cutting edge digital technology that will allow us to better communicate with residents and travelers about important public safety announcements.”

“Chicago is becoming the Silicon Valley of digital outdoor media,” says Jean-Francois Decaux, co-CEO of JCDecaux. ”Ten years after winning the street furniture contract delivering prime audiences in downtown Chicago, JCDecaux, in partnership with Interstate affiliates, will develop and operate the best digital billboard locations along Chicago’s busiest expressways, offering a one-stop solution for national and local advertisers in the third largest US market.

“Billboard advertising represents more than 60% of the US outdoor advertising market and digital billboards is the fastest growing segment. The Chicago City Digital Network will pave the way for JCDecaux to build more digital billboards on an organic basis in other US cities.”

JCDecaux is the largest outdoor advertising company in the world and the market leader in Europe and Asia-Pacific. JCDecaux is listed on Euronext Paris and is part of the Euronext 100 and Dow Jones Sustainability indexes. JCDecaux, which first invented the concept of street furniture in 1964, is currently the only world-class player exclusively focused on outdoor advertising, pursuing a comprehensive range of activities in the areas of street furniture, transport advertising and billboard. Employing a total of 10,300 people, the Group has operations in 55 countries around the world (1,013,500 advertising panels), and is present in 3,700 cities of more than 10,000 inhabitants. JCDecaux’s 2011 revenue was €2,463.0m.( US$3,273 million.)

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