Cinema sales house Wide Eye Media has confirmed it has “merged” its digital out of home (DOOH) Wide Eye Outdoor division with Adtower for an undisclosed sum. Adtower was founded by ex-OAS and Avenue Media executives Vincent and Eileen Whelan in 2011, offering full motion panels in SuperValu, Centra, Eurospar, Spar, Mace, Londis and Maxol outlets.
Industry sources say that the deal gives Wide Eye Outdoor a total of around 750 screens nationwide. Su Duff, marketing and research director, Wide Eye Media, said that while the financial details surrounding the deal are not being divulged, the Whelans will continue working with the new merged entity in order to maintain existing client relationships.
An offshoot of Wide Eye Media (formerly Carlton Screen Advertising), Wide Eye Outdoor (WEO) operates over 400 screens in convenience stores, shopping centres, pubs, gyms and cinema foyers. The company has been hit hard by Government health measures imposed since Covid-19 lockdowns but DOOH is seen as a channel with strong potential.
Close to the point of purchase, Adtower sites offer brand owners a chance to influence last minute decision-making and reminders for consumers in prime retail, leisure and entertainment locations. Behind the scenes, data capture, collation and analysis provide advertisers and retailers with details on traffic, demographics, dwell time and attention.
Eoin Wrixon (top), CEO, Wide Eye Media, said the deal creates an extended DOOH advertising network for FMCG, media, telecoms, entertainment brands, household and health products. Vincent Whelan (above), managing director, Adtower, said that during this tumultuous time the DOOH product on offer to Irish advertisers remains “lockdown-proof”.
Over the last three years the main driver in the growth of OOH has been the move to digital screens promoting user flexibility. In 2020, it accounted for about a third of all OOH revenue and is set to continue to grow. The merger news follows the departure of former ad agency boss John Holland from Adtower, having joined as a marketing consultant in 2013.
At the time, Adtower had just 50 sites on its books. Holland’s job as programmatic lead was to help the Whelans build and scale their offering to advertisers through global verticals using demand side platforms (DSPs) to establish a viable presence in the DOOH market.