European online advertising trade bodies the European Interactive Advertising Association (EIAA) and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB Europe) have merged to form a single organization dedicated to supporting the online ad sector across the region.
The merger will unite each group’s corporate members, bringing the total base to 41 companies including Microsoft, AOL and Yahoo, alongside other major networks and media companies operating in the European digital ad space. The merger is designed to help broaden the influence of the parties’ efforts, and provide a single voice on industry issues such as self-regulation, the pair said.
Following the merger, previous EIAA Executive Director Alison Fennah will assume the role of VP of research and marketing at IAB Europe, and help expand on its existing research and marketing programs. Under the EIAA banner Fennah previously issued reports such as the bi-annual Internet Ad Barometer, which will be rolled into the IAB’s research efforts.
Guy Phillipson, chairman of IAB Europe and CEO at IAB UK, said in a statement the combination would “bring renewed energy and focus to support and protect the interactive advertising industry.”
He added, “Now that the industry has taken the initiative on self-regulation before the European Commission, it is vital that we have one committed and empowered organization… right across the region.”
IAB Europe President and CEO Alain Heureux, will head up the combined entity, with Kimon Zorbas remaining in his role as VP, public affairs – a position in which he is currently promoting a pan-European self regulatory framework for online behavioral advertising.