An ad-tech company owned by 21st Century Fox has hired a former ABC executive as its new president.
TrueX—a company that replaces traditional TV spots with interactive ads to boost engagement—has named Pooja Midha to lead the company. Midha comes from Disney ABC Television Network, where she spent five years as svp of digital ad sales and operations. Midha starts at TrueX on March 6.
TrueX, founded in 2007, was acquired by Fox in 2014 for $200 million and now works with many major networks, including Turner, Viacom, ABC, NBC and A&E. David Levy—who co-founded TrueX before moving to Fox’s ad sales team after the company was acquired—said the company wanted to hire someone who knew the digital challenges faced by networks. He said TV publishers are flanked by the digital advertising “duopoly” of Google and Facebook on one end and an ad-free model such as that of Amazon and Netflix on the other.
“As we’ve gone over the past three years, we’ve expanded our scope at TrueX,” he said. “Our mission is not just around the engagement format, but overall, how do we get more efficient with consumers’ time and attention?”
In addition to her time at ABC, Midha also spent a decade at Viacom in digital ad sales for the music and entertainment division. Asked about the shift to ad tech at a time when many wonder about the value of the overall ecosystem, she said advertising continues to play a vital role in the content that everyone consumes.
“But more than just being ad tech, I think it’s about delivering innovations to consumers, publishers, and advertisers that establish a fair exchange for the value that each one of those parties contributes to the overall system,” she said. “It’s about deploying technology to all three of those parties. If you think about it, the difference between a product and a brand, the difference is emotional connection, and to create emotional connection, you need attention, and you need engagement. And the first product that TrueX launched was [focused] around engagement.”