AdNetwork Focus: Meet Max!

For MaxWorldwide (the ad network formally known as L90), the past few months have been busy. Not only did the company purchase DoubleClick’s media business, realizing DoubleClick’s dream to be known as a pure play technology company, it also moved the company headquarters from California to New York and "removed employees that handled accounts questionably in the past," as Mitchell Cannold, the new President and CEO of MaxWorldwide, puts it.

As a result, Cannold says, they’ve succeeded in bringing together two struggling companies and made them into the largest ad network out there, with little client overlap.

Despite L90’s past problems (not the least of which was an SEC investigation into its accounting practices following a derailed merger with eUniverse), many of the company’s long-term clients stayed by its side through the transformation. The company still boasts the likes of, Popular Mechanics,, the Sci-Fi Channel, and Women’s Forum Network as clients.

The new MaxWorldwide is divided into three divisions: MaxDirect, MaxOnline and MaxCreative.

MaxDirect is the offline division of MaxWorldwide, handling the direct marketing and list building and managing for customers, most of which are catalogers, publishers, and non-profit organizations. MaxWorldwide is looking to acquire a competitor (and is currently in talks with three of them) to add to MaxDirect, in hopes of building and growing the business.

Joanne Capria, president of MaxDirect, says the goal of MaxWorldwide is to have a "synergy for online and offline clients."

MaxOnline is the ad network division of the company (DoubleClick’s DART will continue as the ad server), which also helps companies with brand building, email and creative. Keith Kaplan, Max’s president of sales and marketing, feels that both L90 and DoubleClick Media have been given a second chance under Max’s umbrella, and the combined company will do their best to "bring brands, reach and innovation to their clients."

Kaplan says that the company, which now boasts a 63% reach, is looking to become a one-stop shop where agencies "outsource their work to Max, but everything is done in-source for them." According to MaxWorldwide’s chief strategy officer Peter Sealey, "the real structure of the Internet is going to reform. There are three huge portals, AOL, Yahoo and MSN. MaxWorldwide can be to these portals what Fox Network is to ABC, NBC and CBS. We can be a gateway focused on providing the accountability capabilities of direct marketing with the addressability of the Internet." —Amy Corr

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