Canoe Reveals Programming Partners for its Interactive TV Advertising Solutions

--Partners Are Comcast Networks, Discovery Communications, NBC Universal, Rainbow Media
--Will Deploy an RFI Application Later this Quarter

Canoe Ventures, the company tasked with implementing the US cable industry's plans for interactive and addressable advertising (note: its backers are Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox, Charter, Cablevision and Bright House), said Monday that it has signed separate agreements with Comcast Networks, Discovery Communications, NBC Universal and Rainbow Media that will see those companies launching its national interactive TV advertising solutions across their individual programming networks. Once the partners--which are Canoe's first programming network partners--have integrated their networks with Canoe's national ITV platform, the company says, they will be able to offer a suite of standards-based ITV marketing solutions, beginning with a "request for information" (RFI) app that will be associated with 30-second spots and that is slated to begin deploying later this quarter.

Canoe, which was founded back in 2008, says that it has built a national interactive TV platform that will allow it to launch and manage ITV campaigns on behalf of programming networks across all its partner cable operators. Through this platform and its EBIF-based ITV applications, the company says, Canoe and its affiliated cable operators have created the first standards-based national footprint for interactive TV. The company also stresses that its national platform will make it easier to buy, use and measure national advertisers' advanced advertising and content, and will allow it to offer networks a comprehensive approach to managing and selling their national inventory enhanced with measurable interactivity. Earlier this month (see the article published on itvt.com, May 10th), Canoe announced that it had teamed with the Cabletelevision Advertising Bureau (CAB), the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM), CableLabs, and various MSO, national advertising and cable programming partners, to launch "SelecTV," a consumer-facing brand that will appear on-screen to indicate the availability of interactive TV advertising and content. "Canoe's mission is to turn television into the next great interconnected digital platform," Canoe CEO, David Verklin, said in a prepared statement. "We hope to be a part of enhancing the television experience starting with the launch of truly national interactive TV, something we as an industry have been talking about for many years. We are so proud to be associated with these visionary programming network partners who share our passion to make TV even better." Added Arlene Manos, president of national ad sales for Cablevision-owned Rainbow Networks: "Cablevision has been a leader in the development and deployment of interactive advertising in the New York metropolitan area, and we have already seen the benefits of this advanced technology. We look forward to working with Canoe to incorporate interactivity into advertising on Rainbow's networks across the country, enhancing viewer engagement and results."

According to Canoe, its RFI application is the first of several planned viewer participation applications in its suite of ITV solutions. The company says that an RFI overlay will allow marketers to invite viewers to receive special offers for information or product opportunities, such as coupons and product samples. RFI campaigns will be created using an EBIF-based template that will run across all of Canoe's cable partners' systems. In addition to what it calls a "comprehensive activation process for network partners to integrate enabling ITV technologies and align the necessary broadcast and operations functions for national ITV campaigns," Canoe says that it offers sales support, app testing, and sales and order management integration.

North America