Canoe Ventures has dramatically scaled back its plans to deliver dynamic TV ads to U.S. cable customers – laying off 120, dismissing CEO Kathy Timko, and closing its New York headquarters.
Gone are plans to enhance traditional TV ads with interactive features such as trivia, polls, and instant product offers. Instead, according to former CTO and now CEO Joel Hassell, Canoe will focus on the lesser mission of supporting dynamic ads in VOD content.
“Our new focus will be on giving programmers the ability to dynamically insert advertising into on-demand TV in a common way nationwide, by expanding our current technical platform and operations to facilitate advertising between many programmers and distributors,” new CEO Joel Hassell said in a statement.
The changes at Canoe were first reported by Multichannel News, which said TV ad buyers remain reticent about the potential of the ITV ads. “Among the reasons were that Canoe’s reach across households and networks simply wasn’t broad enough for the biggest marketers, and that the complexity of executing interactive campaigns didn’t justify the additional time and expense,” noted the story, even though the company’s ITV offering claims to reach 25 million households.
Canoe’s remaining 30 staff will be based in Canoe’s former technology operations center – and now headquarters – in Denver.
YouTube is said to be preparing new non-video features that will allow content creators to interact with their viewers through photos, text posts, links and polls.
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