Major brands like AT&T and Bayer are on a crusade to bring transparency back to the digital media supply chain – and are hoping the blockchain-based solutions they’re testing can be an answer.
“Who specifically are those tech providers [in the supply chain] and how much of a fee are they assessing to my working media dollars?” said Mark Wright, VP of media services and sponsorships at AT&T. “It’s pretty murky and thus you need technology to help you get under the hood right now.”
Bayer overhauled its media practices in 2017, building a team to report on ad platform data – bids, clearing prices and inventory – and re-examining its agency and vendor contracts, Rasp said. But that still doesn’t break down the split of every dollar within the supply chain.
Wright said AT&T began piloting its blockchain solution early this year.
“We’re a significant investor in the bidded programmatic space, and we have a significant stake in understanding where our money goes and if we’re getting our money’s worth,” Wright said.
He didn’t want to pin down a specific timeline for the test – although he anticipated the first round would be complete “in the near future.” Once the results come back, AT&T will summarize its findings and plan its next step.
Like Rasp, Wright sees the value in shoring up vendor contracts to understand which middleman is providing what value at what price. “But first you need to know who to assess that to, and you can’t get that until you know who’s in [the supply chain,” Wright added. AT&T is also working with AdFin, whose solution complements Amino’s.
And Amino is certainly building on the momentum, with a $4.5 million seed investment announced Wednesday and led by First Round Capital to expand Amino’s footprint in the market.
Amino has integrations with the buying platform Dstillery and with AppNexus, which as a DSP-SSP hybrid is uniquely suited for the blockchain tech partnership.