Strata, Harris Unveil New Agency Systems

Two of Madison Avenue's media buying systems developers - Strata and Harris Corp. - this morning announced partnerships designed to improve the way advertisers and agencies buy, manage and process online advertising buys. The moves come as the two leaders in the field - Donovan Data Systems and MediaBank - have been investing significant resources to create new, state-of-the-art digital media-buying systems.

Strata, which is a subsidiary of Comcast Corp., announced a deal with FatTail's Media Concierge, a so-called "supply-side platform" enabling publishers to better manage their "long-tail" display advertising inventory - the kind typically sold via ad networks and exchanges, and bought by agency trading desks. Strata said the agreement would enable Strata to seamlessly integrate its digital media-buying systems making it easier, faster and more accurate for agencies to process display inventory via FatTail's systems.

Strata claims to service nearly half of all media buying agencies in the US, processing more than $50 billion worth of electronic media-buying transactions annually.

The deal is similar to one Donovan struck with Rubicon Project in February giving Donovan agencies seamless access to all of the display advertising inventory processed through ad networks and exchanges managed by Rubicon.

Harris Corp. this morning announced a deal with Microsoft that it said would enable it to develop an "advanced advertising agency platform" based on Microsoft Dynamics AX system. Harris said the new platform would be designed specifically to handle financial management for "large agencies and holding companies."

Harris said beta testing for the new system is scheduled for the first half of 2012, with a general rollout planned for the third quarter of 2012.

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