Rubicon Project Taps Former-Google Exec

Ad technology firm The Rubicon Project has tapped Kaylie Smith, former head of Platform Japan + Asia Pacific at Google, to run a new Asia Pacific office based in Sydney, Australia.

The move represents the latest effort by the company to establish a great global presence. In June, Rubicon appointed Jay Stevens -- former VP of European operations, and most recently SVP of Audience, at MySpace -- to head up a new UK operation as VP and general manager, international. (Smith will report directly to Stevens.)

The strategy is a direct result of the rapid globalization of the Web, according to Frank Addante, founder and CEO of the Rubicon Project.

"Up to 40% of visitors to U.S. Web sites come from outside the U.S.," said Addante. "Capitalizing on our global presence is crucial to best serving our customers and partners."

In her new role, Smith is now responsible for managing the overall Australian and Asian operations for the company, and directing a team to grow the business from online publishers and advertising networks worldwide.

"In addition to being able to support locally based publishers in Australia and Asia Pacific, we'll also be enabling our U.S. and UK publishers to better monetize their international traffic."

At Google, Smith worked closely with publishers and agencies to deliver growth of the Google platform and media business across Asia Pacific and Japan.

Amid mounting industry competition, Rubicon recently raised an additional $13 million in venture funding to fuel various growth initiatives, including strategic acquisitions, research and development, infrastructure and international expansion.

A growing number of startups are competing to help Web publishers better manage the sea of ad networks they can now choose from to sell leftover ad impressions.

For a share of earned ad revenue, companies like the Rubicon Project, Pubmatic, and AdMeld factor in pricing data, available inventory, and publisher guidelines to determine which ad network is sent an ad impression -- work that a publisher's sales force would otherwise be required to perform.

Based in Los Angeles, the Rubicon Project launched in 2007. In the first quarter of 2009, the company is reporting 150% revenue growth over the fourth quarter of 2008.

The company's publisher clients include Gannett, Salon, Washington Post/Newsweek Interactive and American Greetings.

Prior to Google, Smith held several executive positions at DoubleClick, including managing director, Asia Pacific and Japan, and vice president of global sales, located in New York and San Francisco.

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