Monday 23 August 2021 8:42 am

Channel 4 launches real-time digital ad bidding amid privatisation threat

Channel 4 is rolling out technology that will allow advertisers to bid for ad space on its streaming service in real time as the state-owned broadcaster battles the threat of privatisation.

The Gogglebox broadcaster has launched a new platform that enables ad space to be auctioned in milliseconds across All 4’s 14,500 hours of programming.

Channel 4 said the All 4 Private Marketplace makes it the first UK broadcaster to make its inventory available through automated real-time bidding.

Chief revenue officer Verica Djurdjevic said the launch “represents the next generation of broadcaster digital ad innovation offering brands complete flexibility to advertise around high quality content on All 4 and improved access to our young engaged viewers”.

Channel 4 has partnered with a number of agency groups and clients for the launch including Deliveroo, Dentsu International, Omnicom Media Group UK and Publicis Media.

The move comes as the channel increasingly shifts its focus away from traditional TV advertising amid an ongoing shift to streaming services.

Boss Alex Mahon has set a target of generating 30 per cent of total revenue from digital advertising by 2025.

Last year posted record digital advertising revenues of £161m, representing 17 per cent of overall revenue.

It also comes as Channel 4 looks to stave off the increasing threat of privatisation after the government launched a consultation into the future ownership of the public service broadcaster.

The Great British Bake Off broadcaster last week brought in the former head of media regulator Ofcom to help mount a defence against privatisation.

Flint Global, a firm founded by former Ofcom boss Ed Richards, has been drafted in while EY has been tapped to update a report into the network’s economic contribution.