It is barely a year since a hard-hitting ANA report blew the lid off practices in which US advertising agencies were accused of keeping up to 20% of clients’ media budgets for themselves after engaging in “pervasive” kick-backs and rebates.

Some agencies have sought to demonstrate they are cleaning up not only their own practices but also are pushing to help clients navigate through a vendor ecosystem that can sometimes be rife with unviewable, fraudulent and unsafe inventory.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Sarah Warner, ‎Digital Investment Lead, Programmatic and Video, for GroupM, outlines how she sees the ecosystem cleaning up.

“As we see publishers trying to trim down their demand partners for kind of direct paths to clients, there’s going to be smaller exchanges that will kind of fall by the wayside,” Warner forecasts.

Warner says buyers want “the cleanest, most direct path to a known premium publisher relationship with transparency into fees, take rates, and exchange relationships”.

Consolidation is now a watch-word for ad-tech, in which the Lumascape of competing vendors has become famously cluttered.

But clutter is not the only problem. The mass of those different platforms, products and companies, when interlinked, creates transparency issues in the very act of data-sharing.

That is why Warner thinks things are going to change.

“I think we’ll continue to see consolidation on the exchange side and the DSP side, and really just the amount of tools that clients are using, and the amount of paths a client will take to a given impression,” she tells Beet.TV.

“It’s very necessary. The marketplace is a bit crowded and it’s not the most transparent place, and so we really need to consolidate and find the most direct path to a publisher rather than taking hops and cuts to our media dollar on the way.”

This interview took place at the AppNexus customer summit in New York.

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