#PiccadillyLights Going, Going, Gone

January 17th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

The world famous Piccadilly Lights were switch off in London Monday morning as works begin on a major redevelopment of the iconic landmark and globally-recognised advertising space.

Picadilly Switch Off 1(LR)

A state-of-the-art new Daktronics screen, 17.56m high x 44.62m wide, will be unveiled in the autumn of 2017, with a static advertising banner set to cover the space until then.

The Lights are rarely switched off, with notable exceptions including during the Second World War, Winston Churchill’s funeral in 1965 and Princess Diana’s funeral in 1997. This significant moment in London this morning, was therefore marked by a montage of historic footage of the Lights followed by a short countdown, before the six separate advertising screens were turned off for the final time at 08.30am.

Picadilly Switch Off 2(LR)

As previously documented, Land Securities, the UK’s largest property company and owner of the unique West End site, has been working with Ocean Outdoor to secure permission from Westminster City Council to undertake the major upgrade.

Ocean CEO Tim Bleakley told us “For the first time, the Lights are witnessing their very own commercial ad break. Needless to say, we are totally committed to working with all the partners on this milestone project to maintain the iconic status of this prestigious landmark. I personally can’t wait for the switch on date later this year.”

Picadilly Switch Off 4(LR)

Six advertisers will share the new screen, taking advantage of its capacity for live video streaming, lifestyle updates such as weather and sports results, and real time social media feeds – think Harmon Corner in Lost Wages, Ed.

We understand that Coca-Cola and Samsung have already renewed their long-standing commitments to the space, which leaves four more brands the chance to secure a coveted spot.

Spotted at #NRF17

January 16th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

At #NRF17 on day one we spotted (in no particular order): Lyle Bunn, Dave Haynes down from Toronto, Steven K Pratt, Barry Frey and former Quividi Vice President Sales for North America, Mitchell Wade, who joined T1V, Inc / Cenique to lead their efforts in Analytics and Retail almost exactly a year ago.

Mitchell Wade - T1V

Mitchell Wade – T1V on the ELO Touchscreen stand

On day two we had the privilege of bumping into Bryan Meszaros, Tom Nix, BroadSign’s Stefanie Gutnik, Craig Henderson and Nanolumens’ Joe Lloyd (smart lady) and new Nanolumens Vice President of Global Retail, Matt Nurre.

Also about but not spotted by us were: Manolo Almagro and Will Amos.

#NRF17 DisplayData Video Wall Booth 4225

January 16th, 2017

Andrew Neale

The geek in us loved the video wall that DisplayData put together at #NRF17, using their electronic shelf labels (ESLs).

NRF2017 - DisplayData ESL videowall

The ESLs are self-contained battery powered units based on an E Ink electronic paper display. The units are available in various different sizes and aspect ratios, and with 5 remotely-managed changes of display image per day, the battery is said to last for 5 years.

As a nice stand centepiece they used 88 ESLs arranged in an 11 x 8 video wall capable of displaying one image across all the devices, or a single image on each.

NRF2017 - DisplayData ESL videowall 2

The videowall also showcases the new dual-colour yellow and black displays – the only company we believe to be actually shipping production versions of this E Ink display version. The more common red and black displays were also used. DisplayData are at Booth 4225.

#NRF17 @HappyOrNotcom Booth 2337

January 15th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

We’ve always wondered where those neat all-in-one Happy-or-Not devices that we often see at UK airports come from. Well now we know, having met Heikki Vaananen, the founder of the business at #NRF17

NRF2017 - HappyOrNot

Happy-or-Not Founder Heikki Vaananen with our editor in chief Adrian Cotterill

Retailers also use them quite extensively we now understand. It’s a niche business and seems to run on a subscription basis – with all data collected from the devices made instantly available in the cloud to the customer. We love it!

You can, and should, go see them in Booth 2337.

#NRF17 @MemoMiLabs Digital Mirror

January 15th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

MemoMi Labs Inc. claim to have created the world’s first Digital Mirror and they had a number of variations of this on display at #NRF17

NRF2017 - Memomi Digital Mirror

Tal Ilovich shows his digital makeup mirror

Tal Ilovich (shown above) showed us a Digital Mirror complete with high-fidelity, true-vision digital imaging software platform and an an adaptive and controlled camera perspective.

Their touch interface was from ELO and they were on the ELO Stand.

RightHand Robotics Automated Piece Picking at #NRF17

January 15th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

RightHand Robotics, Inc., which sounds like it should be, or was, involved in The Big Bang Theory ‘The Robotic Manipulation’ (2010) was the star of the #NRF17 Innovation Lab.

Earlier this month, RightHand Robotics, Inc. unveiled RightKit — its first, in a series of auto-pick robotic systems picking individual items for e-commerce order fulfillment.

NRF2017 - RightHand Robotics 1

Yaro Tenzer demonstrating his automated piece-picking robotic solution

RightKit is a totally automated solution providing customized kits of product samples. Unlike traditional factory robots, the RightKit system can handle thousands of items without reconfiguration, and can pick individual items from cases, totes, and other unstructured bulk inventory storage. The underlying technology that enables this level of flexibility is the is the proprietary RightHand Robotics GraspIntelligence software that plans and executes grasps from 3D vision. The system can handle variety of item categories including health and beauty products, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and grocery.

Watching it in action, it is incredibly impressive and a marvel of engineering.

NRF2017 - RightHand Robotics 2

The RightKit workcell is easy to trial/demo on-site without expensive integration. It is mounted on a standard pallet base that can be easily moved, and uses human-safe collaborative arms. Such nimble automation can then be scaled to meet demand within and across warehouses. Multiple systems can be deployed in parallel to increase the throughput or increase the number of SKUs. RightKit can also be seamlessly integrated with other automation solutions, such as an auto-bagger commonly used for packaging apparel shipments.

RightHand Robotics was founded in 2014 to enable lean supply chain by automating the order fulfillment process. The company is a spin-off from Harvard with a team of MIT engineers and seasoned industry veterans following a top-ranking performance in the DARPA Autonomous Robotic Manipulation competition.

The Rise of the Cross-Device Consumer

January 15th, 2017

Maddie Cotterill

This week Mike Read, SVP Europe, Verto Analytics will be speaking at IAB UK’s first Research Breakfast of the year.

He’ll be presenting insights on the cross-device digital consumers in the UK in the following session: The Rise of the Cross-Device Consumer where you will be able to learn about a day in the life of a typical consumer and how certain demographic groups are engaging with apps, sites, and services.

Title: The Rise of the Cross-Device Consumer
Date/Time: Tuesday, Jan 17 from 9:25am – 9:45am
Location: IAB UK Events and Training Space, 14 Macklin Street, London, WC2B 5NF

More information can be found here.

#OOH Media Buying Automation @Bitposter w/ @EssenceDigital & the FT

January 15th, 2017

Andrew Neale

Bitposter has announced its first campaign with global digital agency Essence. The campaign, for the Financial Times, focusses on how ‘2016 changed the world’. It then encourages people to ‘Prepare for the new year with insight you can act on from the Financial Times’.

We understand that it marks the first time a campaign of this type has been traded via an automated platform – the campaign uses flight data to update passengers with relevant news from the FT as they arrive at their destination.

The OOH element used the Bitposter platform to deliver a campaign that involved Essence using targeted sites in London’s Canary Wharf and London Heathrow Terminal 5 through JCDecaux, as well as inventory across the London Underground network via Exterion Media.

Will Frappell, Head of Partnerships and Emerging Media at Essence said “Our partnership with Bitposter allows us to consolidate all of our DOOH buying under one platform, while maintaining our transparent trading model. This way, we can increase the sophistication of both the planning and measurement elements of our clients’ campaigns.”

Craig Mytton, Chief Revenue Office at Bitposter told us “Essence is a market leading agency who are happy to embrace new technology and new market opportunities. We’re very pleased to be working with them on this campaign which genuinely is a world first. The Bitposter platform helps to bring buyers and sellers of OOH media closer together and we’re hopeful that this campaign will mark the start of digital agencies moving into the OOH media space.”

The Bitposter platform was built to provide efficiencies in how OOH media is bought and sold today. Bitposter offers a cloud based environment where media owners can list their inventory and buyers can plan campaigns using 1st and 3rd party data sources, negotiate, option and book directly with media owners.

Dave King joins @ExterionMediaUK as UK MD

January 13th, 2017

Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief

In what we think is probably yes already, to be the best hire in 2017 we note that Exterion Media, Europe’s largest privately owned OOH company, this week announced the appointment of Dave King as its new Managing Director for the UK (previous incumbent Jason Cotterrell will move to the newly created role of Group Development Director in March).

Dave King Exterion MediaIt’s our own understanding that Dave King has more than likely, been on ‘gardening leave’ from the Telegraph Media Group these past few months (he starts at Exterion Media on January 23, 2017).

He truly is a great hire and Exterion Media CEO Shaun Gregory should be congratulated on bringing in a person of this calibre to help drive his business forward.

At the Telegraph Media Group, Dave King was Executive Director, operating in an extremely challenging part of the advertising sector, and he successfully spearheaded its commercial success. He continually produced market beating performance across his twelve year tenure and during his leadership, the newspaper transformed itself into an industry-leading Media Group – developing its digitised business model, creating new revenue streams and basically ensuring that the company was at the forefront of media innovation.

Prior to the Telegraph Media Group, Dave King was Managing Director of EMAP Advertising, and was responsible for EMAP’s commercial activities including radio, TV, magazines, online and digital media. For two decades, it was the fastest growing media company in the UK and won more media awards than any other company. Prior to EMAP, he was Head of Investment at Carat, responsible for the majority of UK media buying. He started his media career in television, with Ulster and Granada TV. King has studied at Harvard University and previously at Stanford University. Recently, he has been instrumental in the ‘industry project’ to bring all newspapers commercial offerings together under one platform.

Shaun Gregory, CEO of Exterion Media told us “Attracting someone of Dave’s calibre speaks volumes about our business. He has a first class track record across all forms of media, and the necessary experience in transitioning traditional business models into the digitised world we live in today. His career spans both the buy and sell side of our sector, and he has continually delivered results in every role he’s been in. This is testament to Dave’s leadership, his passion for putting clients front and centre and his laser-like focus on the performance of the business. Dave is joining the business at a pivotal time as we embark on the next chapter of our journey. He is a very welcome and great addition to our Leadership Team, and clearly well suited to the world of private equity.”

Dave King will be responsible for the UK business, with a focus on growing franchise operations, accelerating revenue growth and leading its transition into a true Digital Media Company. We fully expect him to start bringing in his own team of backroom staff at Exterion Media just as soon as he has his feet under the table. Watch this space!

Jason Cotterrell’s Role Change at @ExterionMediaUK

January 13th, 2017

Maddie Cotterill

Exterion Media this week announced that UK Managing Director Jason Cotterrell will move to the newly created role of Group Development Director.

Jason Cotterrell will report into Group Chief Operating Officer Leon Taviansky and will focus on the future growth of Exterion Media, including new franchise opportunities and potential partnerships. He will also assess new technologies and platforms as the company continues to digitise its business model. His immediate focus will be working with Dave King, the newly appointed UK Managing Director.

Jason Cotterrell has been the Managing Director of Exterion Media UK for five years. During his tenure, the business has changed significantly from the corporate Out-of-Home contractor CBS Outdoor to the privately owned media company Exterion Media. Most recently, he was a leading member of the UK team in their winning tender for the TfL Rail Advertising Estate, the world’s largest advertising contract, and the introduction of the ground-breaking new commercial media partnership with TfL, Hello London.

Shaun Gregory, CEO of Exterion Media told us “Our future is all about growth and creating a Digital Media Company, powered by data. We’ve come a long way during the last five years, and are now entering an exciting new growth phase. With this is mind, I’m delighted that Jason has agreed to take up this challenge. His initial focus will be in the UK, where 2017 holds a huge amount of potential. Further to this, I look forward to working with Jason to deliver growth across all of our markets.”

He starts his new role in March.