Sky Media could sell Zeebox ads against BBC shows

Zeebox's chief has declared the second screen is "entirely free to be commercialised", as Sky Media prepares to start selling ads to partner BBC content such as 'Top Gear' and Wimbledon on the social TV app.

Zeebox: free to be commercialised says social TV app boss
Zeebox: free to be commercialised says social TV app boss

As part of last week's deal between Zeebox and Sky, ad sales house Sky Media will sell sponsored mentions and links on the Zeebox interface in the coming months. Sources suggest it will sell against shows broadcast by other TV companies as well as Sky.

They also suggest that in future, Sky could offer betting and other Zeebox partnerships with sporting competitions it does not have the rights for, and will be able to synchronise Zeebox ads with ads being broadcast on non-Sky channels.

Sky intends to integrate Zeebox functionality into Sky's apps (including Sky+ and Sky Go), but the app will continue to be available to non-Sky customers.

Ernesto Schmitt, chief executive and co-founder of Zeebox, said Zeebox had received "high levels of interest from media agencies and brands wanting to engage with Zeebox" since its October 2011 launch.

When questioned about whether other broadcasters might have concerns about Sky and Zeebox monetising their content, Schmitt said: "The second screen is entirely free to be commercialised."

He refused to rule out the possibility of Zeebox ads being booked against BBC shows, saying "I have not made any decision yet on how to commercialise Zeebox yet."

Zeebox currently has around 30 staff in the UK, but Schmitt said the business was "ramping up swiftly" and as part of Zeebox's expansion plans, a US launch for the app would come "very soon indeed".

Sky bought a 10% stake in Zeebox in addition to the ad sales agreement and licensing Zeebox's IP in a deal which was reportedly worth $15m (£9.8m). Schmitt would only describe as a "multimillion-pound deal".

Zeebox was founded by former EMI board director Schmitt and BBC iPlayer developer Anthony Rose and is designed to be a second-screen accompaniment to TV programming offering social media discussion and extra info about programming

A spokesman for Sky declined to comment at length on its plans for Zeebox's ad sales, saying: "Sky Media will act as the ad sales partner for zeebox and will sell advertising around the inventory the online platform makes available. This opens up a range of exciting new creative opportunities for brands to engage with audiences on second screens."

Follow Maisie McCabe on Twitter @MaisieMcCabe


Have your say...

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Media Week Jobs
Search for more media jobs

Latest

The X Factor returns with highest launch audience since 2011

The X Factor returns with highest launch audience since 2011

The 11th UK series of 'The X Factor' launched to a peak audience of 10.6 million, the highest for three years, according to unofficial overnight figures.

Share
Former FT chief executive Rona Fairhead hired as BBC Trust chairman

Former FT chief executive Rona Fairhead hired as BBC Trust chairman

Rona Fairhead, the former chairman and chief executive of the Financial Times Group, is set to become the next BBC Trust chairman.

Share
Havas UK revenue climbs 22% in Q2

Havas UK revenue climbs 22% in Q2

Havas has reported income before tax of €94 million (£74.2 million) across the first half of the year, up 5.6 per cent year on year, as UK revenues surged almost 20 per cent in the same period.

Share

Get news by email