Vizio has hired former AMC Networks executive Adam Gaynor to lead Project OAR into its next phase of growth.
Project OAR is a Vizio-led consortium that is aiming to standardize addressable advertising on smart TVs. Networks began trialing the addressable technology in June. Now that tests have begun, Gaynor will be helping current and future networks implement their addressable strategies and grow the consortium “from a project into a business.”
“It’s time for everybody to start making money,” said Gaynor, the former vp of network partnerships at Vizio. “My goal is to help make this open standard something that drives the industry forward, and my role is to help all of Vizio’s ad products move into an addressable world.”
Gaynor joins the smart TV maker after spending nearly three years leading advanced advertising at AMC Networks. He most recently held a consulting position at Landmark Media Advisors.
Vizio has three major business units: Vizio Ads, a sales group it formed last December to sell inventory on its smart TVS; Inscape, a data company; and Project OAR. Gaynor said the relationships customers have with Vizio are different across those units, so part of his role will be to streamline and expand conversations between Vizio and its clients in order for clients to more easily partner with the TV maker.
Gaynor will report to Vizio CRO Mike O’Donnell, who said in a statement the new hire represents Vizio’s continued push into the future of TV.
Project OAR is made up of programmers, ad-tech companies and agencies such as GroupM, Omnicom Media Group and Publicis Media. Vizio, which runs the group, gets paid a fee every time it helps place an addressable ad. Nielsen is running a similar group testing addressable ads on smart TVs.
Founding member of Project OAR Jodie McAfee, svp of sales and marketing at Inscape, will continue to focus on marketing and strategy for the consortium.
“As OAR works through the trial phase and evolves from a project into a product and business, we will continue to improve and add to our addressable capabilities,” McAfee said.
Vizio has 15 million opted-in smart TVs in the U.S. A spokesperson said Project OAR will be running trials on 10 million of those TVs by the end of Q4.
Gaynor said he hopes to eventually bring other smart TV makers and even set-top box providers or streaming devices into Project OAR to provide scale for marketers and programmers.