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Business as usual in outdoor sector after mega-merger abandoned

What’s new this month from QMS, Adshel, oOh! & APN Outdoor

Brendon Cook

Cook: Still exciting times ahead

Several days after calling off the APN Outdoor-oOh!media merger plan, oOh!media CEO Brendon Cook didn’t want to enter a war of words with ACCC chairman Rod Sims about claims outdoor sector customers were opposing the proposal.

MORE: oOh!media-APN Outdoor merger scrapped after ACCC concerns

Cook did tell Mediaweek: “I have spoken to the vast majority of our CMOs, CEOs and chief trading officers, as have my senior staff. Going by the number of texts, email and phone calls from those same clients, they were very shocked.” Cook said the clients of the two outdoor firms were excited by the opportunity a merger offered them.

“Over the past few years we have had a number of acquisitions and a lot of organic development and we have developed a lot of new products. For us the future is about continuing to invest in those products. We have a diverse portfolio of products setting us up for the future.”

As to whether Cook had a scenario prepared for life without APN Outdoor, he said: “We had never originally planned for an acquisition of that scale. That opportunity arose unexpectedly and it was clearly worth pursuing if we believed it would pass the ACCC. Both parties had significant advice around that before proceeding and we are now both on the record as being shocked it went the way it did.”

As to the decision to abandon what they thought was a good plan to merge, Cook explained: “Spending the time and energy for six to 12 months, which might have included a legal case, was not worth the effort at this point. We have plenty we can do that is extremely positive to the industry, shareholders and our staff and we will focus on that.”

Cook said the business will continue to diversify, following a plan he has for 2018 and 2019. It takes a lot to dent Cook’s optimism or dampen his endless energy. “Out-of-home is going great and it is going to be even better as we continue to build out its capability. There are great exciting times ahead.”

oOh! launches Mobile Excite

At the start of May oOh!media launched the Mobile Excite network which it branded the next evolution of their interactive retail network.

Boasting the latest 4k ultra high definition screens, oOh!’s Excite panel features include multi-touch screen, Kinect 2.0 gesture control, voice recognition, web-cam audio and 4G connection. NAB was the first brand to use the Mobile Excite network for a campaign, with panels being placed in four branches across Sydney and Melbourne for all of May. The Mobile Excite campaign will be supported in 15 retail centres with oOh!l’s digital ShopaLive panels.

APN Outdoor wants 100 screens in 2017

APN Outdoor is hoping to have 100 Elite digital screens in operation by the end of the year. With 74 at present, and a further 22 sites approved and their construction imminent the target seems within reach. Sites that have come online in 2017 to-date include a further six in Sydney, five in Melbourne and six in Brisbane with a mixture of conversions from previously existing static sites, as well as entire new builds in prime locations. Featured sites to be delivered in 2017 include Red Hill, Spring Hill and Southport in Brisbane, Roseville, Lewisham, Maroubra and the M5 in Sydney with the addition of two panels on the South Eastern Freeway at Toorak in Melbourne and finally two displays at Gepps Cross in Adelaide.

Shine Brighter with Adshel in 2017

Adshel this month launched a re-energised trade media campaign, labelled Shine Brighter, bringing to light the necessity for brands and advertisers to continue to stand out during the winter months, when shorter daylight hours reduce the visibility of non-illuminated out-of-home campaigns. The campaign emphasises the effects winter has on the commuter journey including changed behaviours and attitudes during the cooler, darker months. The Shine Brighter with Adshel message urges advertisers to ensure they engage commuters (especially during peak evening commutes in the winter months) by selecting Adshel.

Adshel’s head of marketing Charlotte Valente said: “During the winter months, it’s the time to remind brands and advertisers that in order to deliver effective and impactful campaigns that truly connect and engage with commuter audiences, they need to select illuminated formats – or they’ll be left in the dark, after dark. Adshel provides quality illuminated products to Shine Brighter day and night, 365 days of the year and we’re committed to the ongoing expansion of our Adshel Live network to reach even more Australians than any other out-of-home roadside network.”

Adshel and The Brotherhood

Adshel has this month partnered with the Brotherhood of St Laurence to help disadvantaged youth re-enter the workforce. Launched on 3 May, Adshel and the Brotherhood of St Laurence have created a new work experience program, with six participants joining the Adshel Melbourne Operations team for a workplace demonstration, tour and discussion about the different career paths Adshel employees have taken.

To coincide with the program, Adshel is running a roadside campaign for the Brotherhood of St Laurence across bus shelters in both Victoria and the ACT. With the slogan Job Hunter Not Dole Bludger, the aim of the Brotherhood of St Laurence is to challenge the negative stereotypes often associated with unemployment.

Adshel partners with ad tech giant Lotame

Adshel is the first out-of-home media company to enter into an exclusive partnership with Lotame, enabling advertisers to target pre-defined audience profiles across Adshel’s Australian inventory, simplifying out-of-home targeting and media buying process.

Adshel’s precise mobile location data is enriched by Lotame’s Data Management Platform (DMP) and Lotame Data Exchange, providing every Adshel location with audience insights comprising the identified audiences online and mobile demographics, and behavioural and purchase intent profiles at an aggregated, privacy-compliant level.

“Allowing media buyers and trading desks to select Adshel inventory

QMS secures Supercars

QMS Media has announced a strategic agreement with Virgin Australia Supercars Championship (VASC) to provide media opportunities across virtual signage, physical signage, billboards and over-track signage, with races broadcast live on subscription TV and free-to-air across Network Ten. In Australia, Supercars is the 4th most-watched sport, with over 1.8 million fans attending Supercars events. As the season extends from March to December, with events in every state and territory, it is one sport in which advertisers are able to connect with sports fans for the majority of the year.

Barclay Nettlefold, QMS CEO, said: “In conjunction with our new partnership with Netball Australia, it reflects two of the major sports advertising rights we have secured since acquiring OAMM late last year, and our commitment in delivering this connected audience across multiple platforms for our clients.”

QMS Dynamic Duo

QMS has also launched two sites on Sydney’s M2 Motorway – The Cove and The Hills. QMS operates the exclusive outdoor advertising on the M2, where two static sites situated on the Lane Cove Road and Pennant Hills overpass bridges have been converted into state of the art digital billboards.

QMS will launch two new iconic digital billboards in Melbourne, The Eastern II in Clifton Hill, an outbound site on the busy Eastern Freeway, and The Northern in Fawkner, also an outbound site targeting the significant volumes of traffic on the Metropolitan Ring Road. Both sites are former prominent static sites.

QMS unveils Melbourne Square

QMS Media meanwhile this month unveiled a new-look Melbourne Square, with the redevelopment of its existing wrap-around digital billboard and the launch of a new portrait digital The Podium towering over Melbourne’s busiest pedestrian intersection, the three-way intersection of Flinders and Elizabeth Streets in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. The site’s advertising structure has been extended by almost 20sqm and upgraded with the latest in digital screen technology.

Delivering more than eight million contacts, the combined landmark billboards provide advertisers with an opportunity to dominate the sought-after Melbourne CBD location, with dynamic and targeted creative capabilities. Inaugural advertisers featuring across both Melbourne Square sites include Virgin Australia, Cadbury and Honda.

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