DCN Spins Off TrustX, Backs Startup Offering Information Symmetry

In a surprise move, TrustX is being spun off from premium publisher trade group Digital Content Next (DCN), and will be bundled as part of a new company with bigger ambitions and a broader mandate for structuring a privacy-compliant, post-cookie digital-advertising marketplace.

The new company -- venture-backed, for-profit C Corp. Symitri Inc. -- will continue to operate the TrustX SSP (supply-side platform) as a B Corp. nonprofit, because it is an integral part of a new, more ambitious tech stack that will also include a new kind of “real-time data cleanroom enabling secure, firewall-protected, privacy compliant, data and advertising trading across the open web.

The company is backed by the same Big 30 premium publishers that helped incubate TrustX seven years ago as part of DCN, and its emphasis will continue to focus on creating demand and liquidity for premium publishers' advertising inventory.



A key facet of its tech stack is proprietary high-speed data-processing developed by Akamai, which will enable real-time bidding of advertising inventory in a way legacy cleanrooms cannot process.

Both Akamai and DCN are equity owners in Symitri, which also has venture-backing from high profile ad tech VCs including Jonah Goodhart, Will Luttrell and Ari Paparo.

“We put the capital into Symitri – the parent company – because we needed to build out engineering and the product, because we couldn’t afford to do that as TrustX alone,” says David Kohl, who was CEO of TrustX and is now CEO of Symitri.

“Traditional cleanrooms are not designed for a real-time use case, which is the lifeblood of the open web, including things like – I hate to say it but – things like retargeting. How do you do retail retargeting? If you’re a small advertiser and you want to reach your loyalty card customers for a promotion across the open web, how do you do that? We developed this with Akamai to do an instant match without actually merging or moving data between parties,” he explains, adding: “And if we find a match between the person in the publisher’s environment and the person in the advertiser’s desired target we assign them to a group – an anonymous cohort.”

Not surprisingly, Kohl says the platform also enables other privacy-compliant ad-targeting management, “including frequency capping, attribution and a variety of measurement use cases that you’d expect from a cleanroom technology.”

Kohl says the platform already has tested and executed campaigns involving a number of big advertisers, agencies and publishers, but declined to disclose them, adding, “We’re going to be in market for beta over the summer.”

Next story loading loading..