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Publicis Groupe to re-brand 'India Media Exchange' as 'VivaKi Exchange'

By Kapil Ohri , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Planning & Buying | September 03, 2009
Rebranding will be carried out simultaneously in India and other parts of the world, where VivaKi has already created its media exchanges

Publicis Groupe owned India Media Exchange (IMX) -- the consolidated media buying arm of Starcom MediaVest Group, Zenith Optimedia and Solutions Digitas - will be renamed as VivaKi Exchange, within the next six months.

"The re-branding will be executed simultaneously in India, China and other parts of the world, where media exchanges are live," Srikant Sastri, the country chair of VivaKi in India tells afaqs!.

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Apart from India and China, VivaKi has established media exchanges in Germany, Dubai, Australia, and the UK. There are plans to roll out VivaKi Exchanges in other major markets of the world as well.

In an exclusive conversation with afaqs!, David Kenny, managing director, VivaKi points out that addition of more digital capabilities in the media exchanges is the reason behind the re-branding. He says, "We will consistently use the name 'VivaKi', as we will be adding more digital and data capabilities to our analogue media exchanges."

What will change when IMX is rechristened as VivaKi Exchange? "With VivaKi Exchange, we will increase our focus on digital and will do a lot more of digital media buying," says Kenny.

"We expect digital to constitute more than 20 per cent of our total media buying," he adds. Presently, digital comprises less than 10 per cent of the total media buying deals carried out through IMX, while 90 per cent of media buying is in the traditional media space.

Apart from this, VivaKi is all set to bring many of its global digital tools to India, to help advertisers optimise the use of digital advertising.

For instance, VivaKi will introduce a few search marketing tools to assist advertisers in paid search advertising; mobile advertising tools to place SMS and MMS ads; and social media marketing tools to help advertisers to place ads on social networking sites. Some analytical tools will also be made available to pull data from the online ad server to achieve better targeting.

All the tools will be launched under the VivaKi Nerve Center (VNC) banner, the research and technology development arm of VivaKi.

Kenny indicated that post re-branding, VivaKi will work more closely with the media owners to share data to optimise digital campaigns.

Recently, Publicis Groupe acquired a digital agency, Razorfish, which was previously owned by Microsoft Corporation. Kenny indicates that Publicis may launch Razorfish in India, but there are no immediate plans.

He says, "Razorfish was looking at India before we acquired them. Certainly, Razorfish has some clients that need to be in India. So, Razorfish needs to be here, to service global clients."