Publift takes off – ex-Googlers enter Sydney's ad tech fray

Pippa Chambers
By Pippa Chambers | 14 September 2015

A pair of ex-Googlers are hoping to make waves in the Australian ad tech space with their new startup, Publift.

With independence and transparency at the forefront of the new publisher monetisation firm, CEO Colm Dolan, alongside COO Tobin Page, said the business has no reservations about playing in such a saturated market.

“We are totally media agnostic and our goal is to increase advertising revenue regardless of platform,” Dolan said.

“Publishers often don't have the time to figure out the true net value of an impression, but Publift breaks this down to make sure publishers understand the value of each ad partner.

“We know it's a crowded industry, but we are really confident of our offering and feel there is plenty of opportunity for a business like ours.”

Publift, which offers ad serving, remnant ad optimisation, programmatic channel management and native ad strategy, as well as an implementation and training, has already worked with the likes of Dailymotion, TVNZ, Moshtix, Cosmopolitan, WillyWeather and more.

Ad tech partners on its books include Criteo, Outbrain, Polar, Google and Yahoo among others. Its team of two has also quickly grown to four.

Dolan went on to say how the business wants to clean up the internet and improve the quality of impressions - providing “relevant, well-targeted advertising”.

He added eradicating the uncertainty of which partners to use, and educating publishers on exactly how to get the best performance from each platform, cultivates an environment where websites can find that perfect balance between good advertising revenue growth and keeping users satisfied. Publishers can focus on creating great content and reinvest new revenue into new ideas, according to Dolan.

“After years of working with publishers at Google, we both realised while there was no shortage of ad platforms available to publishers, no one was helping publishers to combine all of these platforms effectively,” Dolan said.

“Understandably, most publishers don't have the time or resources to work out the best strategies for remnant ad inventory. It’s a steep learning curve, but Publift takes away the need to hire in expensive, dedicated ad operations expertise or invest time in training existing staff while delivering significant increases in ad revenue”.

Page added that despite the many movers and shakers across the ad tech space, that it's actually a “great time” to be in this space in Sydney.

With so many new formats and platforms around at the moment, he said everyone is just trying to find a foothold and that for a company like Publift, this means there's definitely an opportunity to help publishers to be creative about their ad formats and channels - rather than just focus on stagnant areas.

“Publishers seem genuinely excited about some of the newer technology out there. We as an industry have come a long way from just plastering pages with terrible link ads,” Page said.

“We're now seeing high performing formats that users are engaging with and look great with the content. And that's ultimately the goal here - make enough ad revenue from ad formats that users find relevant and interesting, so that publishers can invest into more great content and technology."

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