The organization formed to smoothe the path to cable TV ad sales almost 40 years ago is rebooting itself for the age of data-based TV ad buys.

Operated by Comcast, Charter and Cox Communications, NCC Media launched in 1981 to provide a common way for ad buyers to get on to disparate and disconnected cable, satellite and now telco networks.

Last week, it rebranded itself to “Ampersand“, just one of a raft of announcements:

  • Rebrand from NCC Media to Ampersand.
  • Unified aggregated viewership data insights across the Charter, Comcast and Cox combined footprint of nearly 40 million households.
  • Advertisers can use OpenAP definitions inside Ampersand.
  • A new platform, National TV Extension (NTVX), to add reach and frequency toward under-exposed audiences.
  • Ampersand will be a “central hub” for addressable buys across Charter, Comcast and Cox, in partnership with Canoe.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Andrew Ward, president of Ampersand, explains the changes.

“NCC Media rationalised that irrational (TV) marketplace by building an infrastructure around data, around platforms, around technology,” Ward says. “As a result, that business segment went from zero to what is today a $6 billion marketplace.

“But as technology and content converge, we think there’s an opportunity to layer on new products and new capabilities on top of the TV legacy infrastructure, around better data, around better targeting capabilities, ultimately around better measurement solutions.

“We’re doubling down on the power of TV. We think television has attributes that are unrivalled in the marketplace … unparalleled reach, quality, professionally produced, brand safe content.

“(The) $25 billion (local TV) business has been planned and executed the same way for the last 80 years – (using an) age-, gender-, panel survey-based methodology. (We must) begin to complement that with richer audience insights at the local market level.”

This video is part of a series of interviews conducted during Advertising Week New York, 2019. This series is co-production of Beet.TV and Advertising Week. The series is sponsored by Roundel, a Target company. Please see more videos from Advertising Week right here.

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