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Singapore Media Exchange takes off with new CEO on board

AppNexus and Lotame selected as core technology partners to power the premium ad exchange 

Singapore, 8 May 2018 - Singapore Media Exchange (SMX), the digital alliance between Singapore’s premium publishers Mediacorp and Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), will be officially operational from May 8, 2018, under the leadership of newly appointed CEO Hari Shankar. The joint venture to launch Singapore’s first premium advertising marketplace was announced in August 2017. 

A digital media marketing veteran, Shankar brings more than 15 years’ experience in media management to the new role. Before joining SMX, Hari was the Managing Director at Ecselis, the strategic arm of the Havas Media Group. He previously held leadership roles at Paypal and Performics in Asia-Pacific.

“Brands are looking for quality choices in the marketplace,” said Hari Shankar, CEO, SMX. “SMX is a harbinger of things to come in the programmatic space in Singapore, following similar developments in other parts of the world. I am incredibly excited to lead this initiative to deliver a premium, brand-safe alternative for programmatic buyers in Singapore.”

According to comScore, Mediacorp and SPH are among the top five digital properties with the highest traffic in Singapore, collectively reaching three in four digital consumers every month. The SMX coalition brings together some of the best-known, market-leading digital brands across news, business, automotive, property, entertainment and lifestyle verticals under one roof (visit for list). For example, the Straits Times, Channel NewsAsia and Today Online are the top three most-visited news sites in Singapore. Through a single SMX programmatic platform, advertisers can now enjoy quality audiences at scale, and within brand-safe and trusted environments.  

Beyond Mediacorp and SPH, SMX will be extending the co-operative to other like-minded premium publishers. There is already keen interest being seen from other publishers who are seeking alternative means to monetise their traffic.

Julian Tan, Executive Vice President, Digital Division, SPH and Director of SMX said: “The commencement of this initiative is just the tip of the iceberg. Through the use of advanced programmatic technology, we are looking to build the premium programmatic marketplace in Singapore, offering advertisers a trusted environment at scale. With this alliance, we also hope to seek out ‘others like us’ to partner so that SMX can widen its reach beyond Mediacorp and SPH, as well as deepen its data depth.”

AppNexus and Lotame have been selected as key technology partners after a six-month review. AppNexus will power the advertising exchange across all digital channels (desktop, mobile) and formats (display, video, native), while Lotame will underpin its data capabilities, including unifying audience data across its coalition partners. The technology partnership with AppNexus and Lotame closely follows the model behind Kiwi Premium Advertising Exchange, a similar publisher co-operative in New Zealand.

“AppNexus’ mission is to help the world’s best media companies build sustainable advertising-supported businesses for the digital age,” said Michael Rubenstein, President, AppNexus. “We’re very proud that SMX has chosen AppNexus to power advertising for Singapore’s most vibrant and premium media companies. AppNexus is the technology partner of choice for similar coalitions and networks worldwide, and this partnership further solidifies that.”

“We are thrilled to be the data management platform partner of choice for this much awaited initiative,” said Alex Sibois, Managing Director, APAC at Lotame. “With our platform powering SMX’s coalition audience data, we are excited about the richer data insights and targeting opportunities that can be achieved concertedly for their advertising clients.” 

As part of its long-term product roadmap, SMX will continue to explore strategic collaborations and invest in new programmatic features to meet evolving advertiser needs. For example, SMX has a multi-screening capability that now enables advertisers to synchronise their programmatic buys real-time with TV event triggers. The ad sync feature leverages the strengths of Mediacorp’s TV reach to drive online-offline integrated marketing synergies. Such a capability has not been available in Singapore until now.

In addition, SMX will be one of the first strategic partners of the Advertising ID Consortium when it launches in the Asia-Pacific region. In an increasingly complex digital ecosystem with fragmented identifiers from multiple platforms, the Consortium, founded by AppNexus, Index Exchange, and LiveRamp, is focused on driving adoption of a unified and open identity solution that vastly improves identity resolution so that buyers and sellers of programmatic advertising can deliver more relevant campaigns. By rallying around a standardised global framework, Consortium partners can achieve meaningful scale, create more impactful engagement, and deliver better consumer experiences. 

Roger Moy, Head of Consumer Insights and Analytics at Mediacorp and Chair of SMX, said: “Since announcing the SMX initiative, we have been firing on all cylinders to rethink a different kind of ad exchange that marries the unique strengths of our co-operative partners. The recent milestones and collaborations, from online-offline multi-screen ad sync, unified audience data insights to open identity solution adoption, bear testament to how the team has been listening and responding to our customers. We are excited by the possibilities.”


Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Co. Regn. No. 198402868E

For media enquiries, please contact: 

Rebecca Chee (Ms)
Executive, Corporate Communications & CSR
Singapore Press Holdings Limited
DID: +656319 1124

Sharon Toh (Ms)
Assistant Lead, Brand & Communications
DID: +656350 3931

Singapore Media Exchange (SMX) is a premium publisher programmatic advertising exchange established jointly by Mediacorp Pte Ltd and Singapore Press Holdings Ltd, the two largest media companies in Singapore. Leveraging world-class technology solutions, SMX offers marketers access to quality audiences at scale within brand-safe, trusted environments through a single programmatic platform. SMX collectively reaches three in four digital consumers in Singapore every month.  

Incorporated in 1984, main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is Asia’s leading media organisation, engaging minds and enriching lives across multiple languages and platforms. 

SPH's core business is publishing of newspapers, magazines and books in both print and digital editions.  It also owns other digital products, online classifieds, radio stations and outdoor media. 

On the property front, SPH owns 70% in a real estate investment trust called SPH REIT which comprises Paragon, a premier upscale retail mall and medical suite/office property in Orchard Road and The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban mall. SPH also owns and operates The Seletar Mall.  It is developing a new commercial cum residential site at Woodleigh. It also has a stake in Chinatown Point.

It is in the aged care sector and owns Orange Valley, Singapore’s largest private nursing home operator. 

SPH runs a regional events arm and a chain of Buzz retail outlets.  It also invested in the education business.

Mediacorp has the widest range of media platforms in Singapore spanning digital, television, radio, print and out-of-home media. Its mission is to engage, entertain and enrich audiences by harnessing the power of creativity.

Mediacorp pioneered the development of Singapore’s broadcasting industry, with the radio broadcast in 1936 and television broadcast in 1963. Today, the company has over 50 products and brands in four languages (English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil), reaching out to virtually all adults in Singapore weekly. 

Mediacorp is an active regional player through Channel NewsAsia International, drama co-productions and collaborations in magazine publishing and online media. Its investments include stakes in Kapanlagi Network, Indonesia’s largest independent digital media, as well as Reebonz, one of the region’s fastest growing luxury online retailers, and Vietnam television’s International Media Corporation.

Mediacorp was named Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year for the 14th time at the Asian Television Awards in 2017. 

AppNexus is an internet technology company that enables and optimises the real-time sale and purchase of digital advertising. Its powerful, real-time decisioning platform supports core products that enable publishers to maximise yield; and marketers and agencies to harness data and machine learning to deliver intelligent and customised campaigns.

Lotame is the leading independent data management platform (DMP), enabling companies to use data to build stronger connections with their consumers. Lotame also delivers the most widely used, trusted and comprehensive data exchange in the industry. Through its technology, Lotame helps its clients harness the power of data to fuel more relevant and personalised experiences across screens and devices, online and off.

The Advertising ID Consortium is an open and independent organisation comprised of companies spanning the digital advertising industry that provides an open identity solution for the ecosystem. Founded by AppNexus, Index Exchange, and LiveRamp in 2017, the Consortium enables buyers and sellers of programmatic advertising to leverage people-based marketing to create more relevant campaigns and improve user experience.