Ogilvy Melbourne Named as Cadbury’s Creative Agency By Chrissie Cluney


Ogilvy Melbourne has been named the local creative agency for Cadbury Dairy Milk, replacing Saatchi & Saatchi Sydney. Ogilvy Melbourne will take on local Cadbury and Cadbury Dairy Milk campaign responsibilities in Australia and New Zealand. This will allow them to become a “full service local partner” on Cadbury brands, and Cadbury Dairy Milk local activation.

“Cadbury is one of our most iconic brands and we’re excited to partner with VCCP and Ogilvy to write the next chapter in the brand’s famous advertising history,” said Ben Wick, global brand director, Mondelez, one of the world’s largest snacks companies.

Saatchi & Saatchi has held the Cadbury account for five years. They delivered campaigns including Cadbury Dairy Milk ‘Joyville’ and ‘Dominos’ and more recently Cadbury Favorites ‘Everyone gets their favourites’.

OMG Digital Raises a Seed Round of $1.1M by Chrissie Cluney

OMG Digital, the Ghana-based media startup known as the “BuzzFeed of Africa,” has raised $1.1 million in seed funding. Its main website, OMG Voice has versions for Ghana, Nigeria, and Kenya. The new capital will be used to expand into more countries.

Launched by Jesse Arhin Ghansah, Prince Boakye Boampong, and Dominic Mensah in February 2016, OMG Voice now claims 4.5 million unique visitors each month. OMG Digital has a team of 25 employees and plans to launch sites for South Africa, Uganda, Zambia, and Tanzania. The money that was raised will be used to support its expansion, produce more video content and grow its advertising and marketing departments.
“It was really frustrating for us because we would go online and all the content was just boring news and politics and stuff. So we wanted to create something for people like us, with listicles and lightweight content. Smartphones started to take off and Facebook became super popular as well, and that’s why we started OMG,” said Jesse Arhin Ghansah, co-founder, OMG Digital.
Ghansah and his co-founders started OMG Ghana in 2012 when they were in college. It was the time when smartphones were becoming more popular, but Ghansah had a hard time finding interesting things to read.
Though most things can be shared between the sites and every country’s version of OMG Voice has a lot of tailor-made content. “There are a lot of cultural nuances and differences, but in some countries, there are some similarities,” said Ghansah. “Like Ghana and Nigeria are close in terms of culture, so it’s easy to create content for both of them. Kenyans and Tanzanians have similar cultures as well, so we are trying to tackle [expansion] just by going into the countries we are already in and finding the next closest market in terms of culture.”
The company will begin with English-speaking markets. Then they will branch out into French and other languages, with the goal of one day being present in every African country. OMG Voice already has a culinary vertical called ServePot, and plans to launch tech and lifestyle verticals as well. The company will also begin building an events business, with meet-ups and startup conferences.
“We want to pioneer content advertising in Africa with major brands and it’s going good so far,” said Ghansah. “Brands are starting to get it and the next two years will be huge for us.”

Delphi and Transdev Develop Global On-demand Driverless Transportation by Chrissie Cluney

Delphi and Transdev are developing automated, on-demand mobility systems, with a service offering set. The companies hope to debut with a service offering set via pilot projects in France, and then to eventually expand to global reach.

Delphi will bring its automated driving platform to the mix that it is creating in partnership with Mobileye. Transdev is a recognized leader in mobility network operation. It has already worked with public transit authorities around the world, including rams, light rail, buses, ferries, and more recently, autonomous vehicles.

Delphi and Transdev want to have a global footprint with their technology. The companies are also going to be working on getting pilot projects operating very quickly.

“We believe that autonomy will bring a lot of social benefits,” said Yann Leriche, chief performance officer, Transdev “Our mission is to leverage those benefits to provide attractive shared transportation options to our clients. The asset can be shared, for example on-demand cars, or the ride can be shared, for example, buses.”

For Delphi, this partnership will provide access to testing on a wide range of vehicle types across a wide variety of service settings. It also gives them a company to work with that already has a deep functional understanding of current urban transit and the challenges therein.

“They have that clear pathway, they’re operating today, they understand this and we couldn’t be more excited to be adding them as a partner,” said Glen De Vos, chief technology officer, Delphi. “We really have line of sight into how the technology can be deployed, and deployed in a way that really makes sense in terms of safety and in terms of commercial operations.”

Both companies will contribute to the co-development of future autonomous vehicles. The companies will add to the infrastructure to make operating a commercial service sustainable and scalable.

Dave Buklarewicz Joins MARC USA by Chrissie Cluney

MARC USA has appointed Dave Buklarewicz to the company’s newly created position of EVP/Executive Media Director. The Pittsburgh-based ad agency has been adding resources to its media and data/analytics offering. It is trying to redouble their efforts to attract media customers to its group of clients most of which take a mix of creative and media services.

Buklarewicz is a 20-plus year industry veteran who joined the agency from Havas Media. He will be responsible for overseeing the company’s growing media practice, which has a staff of over 60 employees, in all four of their offices.

“We believe there’s a real gap in the marketplace and a tremendous growth opportunity for us,” said Michele Fabrizi, president and CEO, MARC USA. She is referring to the media services arena.

The agency currently provides media services for AOR clients such as Rite Aid, Payless ShoeSource, the Pennsylvania Lottery, Belle Tire and others. Media-only clients include pharmaceutical firm Kaleo and Five Star Senior Living.

Google’s ‘Home’ is Having Problems by Chrissie Clune

Google had high hopes for its virtual assistant ‘Home’ to take on Amazon’s ‘Alexa‘. The problem is that the product has trouble with users reporting indifferent behavior from ‘Home’.

The virtual assistant is spitting out errors instead of controlling smart home devices and answering questions. “According to multiple online complaints, there’s a Google Home outage affecting a significant portion of users,” said Android Police, a technology website.

To know if your ‘Home’ device is affected, users need to use a trigger phrase. The device will respond with “Hmm, something went wrong. Try again in a few seconds,” or “There was a glitch. Try again in a few seconds.”

“Most users say the issues started popping up in the last day or two and today Google Home has a nearly 100 percent failure rate,” said the report. However the other devices with Google Assistant are working fine.

MediaCom Promotes Pang by Chrissie Cluney


MediaCom has promoted Willie Pang to chief operating officer of the agency. He will lead their Melbourne office.

Pang will be responsible for growing the business through product and new business development. He will also work to continue to lead on MediaCom solutions nationally. This includes the digital, data and innovation portfolio.

“When we began our search for leadership in Melbourne, first and foremost we wanted someone that would be a strong cultural fit for our people and clients. Someone that can inspire, lead and bring a team together,” said Sean Seamer, CEO, MediaCom.

Growing its Melbourne office has become a priority for MediaCom. The agency has been restructuring how it operates. Seamer said that Pang has been instrumental in repositioning MediaCom and how it serves its clients to adapt to the digitization of media and marketing during his 18 months as chief digital officer.

“I firmly believe that MediaCom is at the forefront of transforming what it means to be a media agency and our Melbourne business will play a critical role,” said Willie Pang, digital officer, MediaCom. Pang will begin his new role of COO in July.

CornerJob Earns $19M to Keep Growing its Blue-collar Hiring Platform by Chrissie Cluney

CornerJob, a Barcelona-based blue-collar recruitment app, has ended a $19 million Series C round. It last raised $5M in July 2016. Back then it took in a $25M Series B round, of which was a media for equity agreement investment. Cornerjob has also closed a $10M Series A in February of 2016. To date, the total funding is currently $54M.

“On the product side, we will keep on improving the candidate experience, but… we will [also] concentrate a lot on providing more productivity tools for companies, step up our machine learning initiatives, and reinforce our presence on all elements of the recruitment value chain. For instance on the transactional part with many iterations planed on the service we’ve launched together with Randstad,” said David Rodriguez, CEO, Cornerjob.

The new financing will be used for product development. Also the financing will bolster its position in “strategic markets” and expand into some new ones.

What’s Cornerjob’s focus? CornerJob focuses on low-skill, high-turnover recruitment. This aims to streamline the hiring and job-search process via a lightweight mobile app that lets employers advertise jobs via its location-based app platform. The app also focuses on a shortlist and chat with potential recruits.

The app is building SaaS tools for employers aimed at speeding up the hiring process and ultimately resulting in successful hires. This is vital because it is how the company intends to make revenue. Among its investor roster is the VC arm of human resources giant, Randstad, spying some clear synergies.

What about jobseekers? CornerJob offers quick and easy location-based job search that can be filtered by sector. This aims to do away with the need for CVs for this jobseeker segment.

“New tools include the ‘flash questions’ feature which allows companies to ask multiple choice questions very specific to the job offer and translate into a chat bot interaction on the candidate side to make the experience always seamless. We’re also introducing a set of features that add more transparency on candidate and company behavior on the platform with reviews, ratings, response times, etc. These are just a few examples of evolutions underway,” said Rodriguez.

Where is Cornerjob active? CornerJob is active in four markets presently, which include: France, Italy, Spain and Mexico. France and Italy were the countries that the app was launched first and it’s the app’s biggest markets.

Accenture Refutes Claims over ING Pitch by Chrissie Cluney

Accenture has refuted that there is a conflict of interest with ING Direct. Even though Accenture just selected UM as its global agency of record.

“Accenture professionals have been providing media pitch management services for more than a decade, however, our team does not select agencies for clients. Clients fully own the selection decision,” said an Accenture spokesperson.

UM client ING Direct called a global review of its media planning and buying account earlier this year. Accenture was revealed as the firm running the pitch process. Locally the account is worth up to $12 million.

“At the same time, Accenture Marketing and Communications has always worked with a large global media advertising agency for Accenture’s own corporate advertising and media strategy. These are two separate and distinct divisions of Accenture and we have the strictest policies and protocols in place to ensure complete business and client confidentiality,” said an Accenture spokesperson.

The ING Direct division is owned by Dutch multinational banking and financial services firm, the ING Group. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the European stock exchange, Euronext.

Business Alerts by Chrissie Cluney

  • The Stagwell Group Acquires Wolfgang


The Stagwell Group has acquired a minority stake in a new creative consultancy called Wolfgang. The company was founded by former David & Goliath executives Mike Geiger, Seema Miller and Colin Jeffrey.

“I was immeasurably impresssed with the way [Wolfgang] combined strategic planning with creative,” said Mr. Penn. “We continue to fill out the marketing wheel and it’s important to have people onboard that are at the forefront of advertising and creative,” said Mark Penn, president and managing partner, The Stagwell Group.

Wolfgang is part Stagwell Group’s Marketing Incubator, which also includes digital advocacy shop Targeted Victory. While terms of the deal were not disclosed, Stagwell has an option to acquire a majority stake in Wolfgang in the future.

Wolfgang, which is based in Los Angeles, has about 12 staffers at the moment, including freelancers. The company is looking to bring on more people later this year who have a mix of left and right brain skill sets.

The co-founders of Wolfgang liked the Stagwell model because it’s a new type of holding company model that doesn’t have dozens of the same types of agencies. The company acquires shops that complement each other.

In January, Stagwell acquired Nielsen’s Harris brand and the Harris Poll through its Stagwell Media fund. That acquisition, which is the holding company’s fifth since October 2015, was expected to bring Stagwell Group’s revenue up to $250 million by the end of the year. Now, with that capital, Stagwell is up to $750 million in acquisitions.


  • Spotify Acquires MightyTV


Spotify has acquired content recommendation service MightyTV. Spotify is looking to further enhance the company’s advertising products and its marketing technology platforms. The deal will also see the addition of MightyTV’s founder and CEO Brian Adams to the company, where he will become Spotify’s VP of Technology. Adams will focus on both of these initiatives.

“The content recommendation system MightyTV has built is incredibly aligned with how we think about advertising technology and marketing personalization,” said Jason Richman, vice president of Product, Spotify. “Brian and his team will help us continue to innovate on free monetization and extend our leadership position in programmatic audio.”

MightyTV was a startup that offered TV show and movie recommendations. The company had developed a Tinder-style mobile app for iOS and Android that would allow the consumer to quickly indicate whether they liked or disliked a given title as a means of helping to customize MightyTV’s suggestions to their own personal tastes. The recommendations would then improve overtime with the more the consumer used the product.

“Spotify has built the leading marketplace for fans and creators,” said Brian Adams, vice president of technology, Spotify. “It’s an enormous opportunity for me and the team to help create native brand experiences that stay true to a product that millions love.”

What attracted consumers to MighyTV? From a consumer perspective, what made MightyTV interesting was not necessarily its Tinder-like interface but that it combined different approaches to making its suggestions, which consists of those that came from the aggregated user ratings as well as those that better understood one’s individual tastes.

MightyTV’s team of eight will be joining Spotify as part of the acquisition and will be based in their New York City, Toronto and Stockholm offices. The company has raised $4.25 million in seed funding.


  • Publicis Groupe and Microsoft Partners for Custom Experiences Via AI


Publicis Groupe and Microsoft have partnered together to create custom experiences for their consumers using AI. The holding company and its agency businesses will gain access to data capabilities and artificial intelligence designed for marketing with Microsoft Azure and the Cortana Intelligence Suite.

“This partnership is critical for us because it’s one of the biggest bets we’re making on the Microsoft platform,” said Samih Fadli, chief intelligence officer, SapientRazorfish. “There’s Google, Microsoft and AWS, but we made a decision … that Microsoft Azure would become our preferred platform to build assets.”

The agency created a customized version of Cortana, Microsoft’s virtual assistant, specifically for Publicis with the algorithms and data models embedded into COSMOS. This is the holding company’s cognitive intelligence marketing platform. Because of this, the two companies will jointly create new consumer interfaces and interactions such as facial recognition, natural-language processing and voice recognition.

The relationship began in 2009 when Publicis acquired Razorfish from Microsoft. That acquisition turned into a partnership that now supports artificial intelligence through Publicis’ marketing cloud COSMOS.


  • Snapcart Raises $3M for Tracking Offline Commerce Data in Southeast Asia


Snapcart, a startup helping to bring transparency to the world of offline commerce in Southeast Asia, has raised $3 million in pre-Series A funding. The company was launched in September 2015.

The goal was to provide data on the largely uncharted world of offline commerce in Southeast Asia, which is a region of over 600 million consumers and a growing middle class. Snapcart gathers shopper and purchase data by incentivizing consumers to upload their shopping receipts into its app in exchange for cash-back rewards.

“It’s a black hole and brands don’t know what is happening,” said Reynazran Royono, CEO and founder, Snapcart.

Snapcart raised $1.7 million in January 2016. This new financing is designed to push it towards a Series A round before the end of this year. This $3 million raise is led by new investor Vickers Venture Partners with participation from existing backers Wavemaker Partners and SPH Media Fund, the investment arm of Singapore Press Holdings.

“Receipts form different formats across the countries where we collect them so there’s a lot of processes done to decrypt them: translating into text, making sure it is accurate and that we understand what is written,” said Royono. “We really invest a lot because we want to make sure the data we capture is captured in a high quality manner.”

Over the past year, Snapcart has expanded from its launch market of Indonesia into the Philippines. Manila is where the startup houses its artificial intelligence and data analysis team, which perfects the systems behind its OCR (optical character recognition) technology that identifies line items within shopping receipts.


Business Alerts by Chrissie Cluney

  • Techstars Starts New Startup Accelerator in Paris

Techstars, a global startup ecosystem, has funded a new startup accelerator program in Paris, France. This new program is co-funded by VC firm Partech Ventures.

“I’m happy to announce that we’re launching the first program in France, Techstars Paris,” said Bertier Luyt, managing director, Techstars. “It is a ‘city program’, a program without any specific industry focus, very broad and open.”

The first round will begin in September 2017 and the application process should begin soon. If an applicant gets selected, they will receive $120,000 in funding. Also Techstars will take a 6 percent stake in their company. The good thing is that this program isn’t restricted to French startups. Any entrepreneur who wants to spend some time in Paris can apply.

Techstars has many different programs around the world. The most famous ones are the city programs in NYC, Boulder, Colorado and Boston, Massachusetts. The company also partners with big companies, such as Disney, Barclays and others to run accelerators for them. This allows those programs to create a healthy revenue stream.

Techstars is working with big companies in France. Partech made some introductions for Techstars, and it turns out that Air Liquide, Française des Jeux, Groupama, Renault and Total are all Techstars Paris partners.

“After the batch, we develop another program for Techstars Paris partners, for their teams and employees,” said Luyt. “The first program is scheduled for the first quarter of 2018.” This allows the French giants like Total and Renault to get to know how startups actually work.

The launch of Techstars Paris is a good sign for the French tech ecosystem. There are already many different accelerators in France, but the Techstars brand is stronger than many of those.


  • TBWA Sydney and GoDaddy launching first all-Aussie campaign

TBWA Sydney and GoDaddy are joining forces for a new all-Aussie campaign. “Cursor Man” is an ad campaign featuring a small business set up like an actual computer, complete with folders and a cursor. The campaign hopes to show the convenience of GoDaddy technology in setting up a website.

“We wanted to create a campaign that clearly shows that you don’t need to rely on tech-savvy relatives or expensive technology to get your business up and running on the web: it takes less than an hour to establish a website that can deliver real value,” said Tara Commerford, vice president and managing director, GoDaddy ANZ.

The campaign is the result of a recent study from GoDaddy. It found that 61% of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) still don’t have a website, yet 70% of them want one in the future.

“In this campaign, we wanted to capture the ambition and attitude that drive Aussie SMBs, and show them how they can channel those traits into an online business,” said Derek Craig, marketing director, GoDaddy.

“Cursor Man” is humorous and somewhat unusual. This makes the ad campaign a departure from the infamously controversial American GoDaddy ads of the past.


  • London ‘Proptech’ Startup, Nested Raises $9,985,600

Nested, a London startup company has raised 8 millions pounds, which is equivalent to $9,985,600 in US currency. Nested promises to sell houses within 90 days. If they don’t accomplish this goal they offer their client a cash advance.

“We are already helping 5 people a month within a few months of launching and have many more in the pipeline,” said Matt Robinson, co-founder, Nested. “This meant we broke even in our fourth month of trading with revenue at an annual run-rate of more than £1 million.”

Launched in January 2016 by Robinson and Tim Bunting, the company operates similarly to a traditional estate agent to help people sell their houses, but with a difference. In addition to providing a valuation, marketing and sales service, the startup guarantees to sell their clients property for 95-98 percent of market value within 90 days, or they’ll offer them the cash themselves instead. That’s made possible because of how confident the company is in the technology and data that it can price a property accurately enough in the first place. Nested has gotten assistance from Passion Capital who have led the round, with participation from Rocket Internet’s venture arm Global Founders Capital (GFC).

If Nested achieves a higher sale price than the one it guaranteed and offered, either before or after the 90-day window, the company will split the difference, up to 70/30 in favor of the property owner. This keeps the interests of both parties aligned.

What’s the idea? The idea is to help eliminate the uncertainty when trying to both sell and buy a house. This eliminates being caught up in the dreaded property ‘chain,’ which means the client potentially misses out on their desired home, or are kept in limbo indefinitely waiting for their property to sell.

“We are already helping 5 people a month within a few months of launching and have many more in the pipeline,” said Robinson. “This meant we broke even in our fourth month of trading with revenue at an annual run-rate of more than £1 million”.

Nested’s idea is an interested concept. It could revolutionize the real estate industry for a long time.


  • Swinburne University inks Deal with MarTech to Tackle Digital Transformation

Swinburne University of Technology has signed a deal with Adobe to transform its own digital offering. The University will present at MarTech’s conference in May 2017.

“Given our integration of Adobe’s platforms, the design of this major offered by Swinburne aligns to our needs and strengthens the pathway of talent flowing through who are able to really hit the ground running,” said Todd Copeland, acting executive general manger, NAB digital.

A total of 40 students at Swinburne, which ranked within the top 3% of universities globally, as assessed by the Academic Ranking of World Universities, took the course as a major in 2016. The students were trained in areas such as digital analytics, search marketing, social media marketing and video marketing.

“We are committed to providing our students with a cutting-edge education and preparing them to take leading roles in an ever-evolving workforce,” said Scott Thompson-Whiteside, professor and executive dean of the Faculty of Health Arts and Design, Swinburne.

The students of Swinburne are equipped to handle the questions and comments that will be fired at them during the conference. The possible outcome from the conference could raise Swinburne’s ranking in the future.