The new chief executive of Adshel, Mike Tyquin, is certainly no stranger to the business. He has been with Adshel as chief commercial officer for the past three years and consulted to Adshel and APN News and Media before that. “I am reasonably comfortable with what we are trying to do,” Tyquin told Mediaweek in his familiar understated manner. “Out-of-home is a great place to be and it has been for a while.”
Tyquin replaced Rob Atkinson last month after his former boss was appointed CEO of Australian Radio Network (ARN).
Tyquin is a former CEO of Eye Corp Australia and New Zealand, departing when the sales process started that saw it merge with oOh!media five years ago.
The initial attraction of joining Adshel for Tyquin was a process that former APN News & Media CEO Michael Miller started and then Ciaran Davis has continued. “That was to turn APN News & Media from a holder of media assets as an investor to an active operator of a media company,” explained Tyquin.
In the past APN News & Media had several JV partnerships for its main businesses. Now it has two wholly owned media divisions as its primary assets.
Digital investment has accounted for much Adshel investment, with Tyquin noting they have converted about 5% of their inventory. “Our digital revenue growth has been very good and our performance in the market has been strong in Australia and New Zealand. We feel we have a long runway ahead of us for new digital assets.”
While there is a need to digitise screens, Tyquin also noted: “You do need to bring the data and the automation pieces to life. To drive the demand and the velocity you create a lot more supply capacity. It is not as simple as saying to client, ‘The screen looks better.’ We bring to life all the other features and benefits to make the campaigns more impactful and effective.”
The regulatory environment that governs what can be utilised with digital screens in the roadside environment, both for billboards and street furniture, is quite restrictive. “High quality inventory has been converted in fantastic locations. When you overlay that with the capability that digital brings it unlocks a lot of value for advertisers that for some of them just wasn’t available with static out-of-home.”
Tyquin noted that unlike some forms of non-digital media, there is nothing wrong with what some also call “classic” out-of-home. “It remains a fantastic brand-building format in its own right and the numbers are still strong. The digital capabilities do bring a whole new ad context for advertisers that is new and wasn’t there previously.”
In Tyquin’s previous Adshel role the New Zealand operation reported to him and it is a market where there has been much activity from Australian players recently.
“We led our digital rollout in New Zealand and had the national network running before Australia. It has been a good market for us with a lot of early-adopter clients and agencies. Growth in New Zealand has been ahead of Australia – there have been some big challenges for New Zealand FTA television, which is something we are certainly benefiting from.”
Tyquin said that is happening here to come extent: “Long-term TV clients are having another look at out-of-home because we supply the audience delivery and all the broadcast features and capability, with better targeted solutions in terms of time, location and audience.”
Brand safety is an issue that doesn’t involve outdoor at all, with Tyquin confirming he feels they are getting revenue growth from some advertisers moving investment.
His highlight this year, so far, is the recent partnership with Rubicon Project. Adshel is extending its sales channel reach to a wider network of media buyers via integrating its OOH inventory into Rubicon Project’s guaranteed orders platform.
Rubicon Project is integrated with a wide variety of agency trading desks, independent trading desks, direct advertisers and media buying agencies.
Adshel will initially sell its Australian Adshel Rail and Adshel Live digital outdoor media via Rubicon Project and we will in time scale this to include Adshel static outdoor posters across its network of locations.
This is the first time out-of-home media in Australia is being made available to trading desks in this way.