Ex-Carat MD Andrew Norris Emerges As Real Programmatic CEO, Signs NRL Deal

Ex-Carat MD Andrew Norris Emerges As Real Programmatic CEO, Signs NRL Deal

Former Carat and Mitchells managing director Andrew Norris (pictured above middle) has emerged as the CEO of a platform-agnostic programmatic consultancy Real Programmatic.

David Hovenden
Posted by David Hovenden

Norris, who was the managing director of Carat Australia for nearly four years and MD NSW at Mitchell & Partners for more than five years before that left the Dentsu-Aegis Group six months ago.

In something of a good omen for the fledgling group, it has also just secured a contract with the NRL to provide strategic advice on programmatic.

Real Programmatic co-founders Jonathan Despinidic (above, right) and Justin Boersma (left) said that an executive of Andrew Norris’ calibre brought a wealth of senior level advertising and marketing experience to the role.

“Andrew’s leadership qualifications and strategic vision are exactly what we were looking for to take the company from start-up to realising our ambition to become a market leader in the programmatic media consultancy space,” said Jonathan Despinidic.

“With Andrew’s appointment we now have someone with an intimate knowledge of agency practices and key skills spanning C-Suite client relationships and marketing analytics and attribution,” said Justin Boersma.

“I am excited to be joining REAL at a critical point in its evolution and will be looking to put my 25 years of agency experience into the task of growing the business, not just in Australia and New Zealand, but into Asia, Europe, the UK and the US,” said Andrew Norris.

“There is no doubt that industry-wide change is required within the programmatic ecosystem and I support the view that meaningful, structural change will need to be led by brands and marketers.

“I would suggest that one of the greatest fears of an agency is an informed and knowledgeable client. Our job is to help empower brands by unpacking the ‘black box’ of programmatic media.

“The real beneficiaries of greater transparency will be brands and media owners and, ultimately, the consumer who will experience digital advertising that is targeted, creative and has relevancy to their specific needs and wants,” said Andrew Norris.

Real Programmatic’s Despinidic told B&T that he new where the bodies were buried in the programmatic landscape and his consultancy intended to lift the lid on what he said were highly questionable practices “rife within the industry”.

A White Paper produced by Real Programmatic, provides a damning assessment of the programmatic world in which clients interests are put behind those of the agency and that a shift to in-house trading desks by brands was almost inevitable.

“We produced this first White Paper, Programmatic Media: State of the Nation to clearly articulate what we stand for. We intend to research and publish other White Papers on aspects of the programmatic ecosystem.

“We believe the system has to change, and we aim to be one of the agents of that change, advising clients – from the buy-side and sell-side – about all things programmatic,” said REAL Programmatic Co-founder Justin Boersma.

“This business is as much about thinking as it is about doing. The production of this White Paper required extensive research and clarity of thought; Both of which are required to deliver on our mission to lift the lid on the ‘black box’ of programmatic to enable brands, marketers and publishers to take greater control of their programmatic destinies.

Less than three months after establishment, the company has already signed up a significant New Zealand publisher as its first client, and a major Australian brand has just engaged the services of the company’s Sydney office. Others are lining up.

“We’ve been taken a bit by surprise at the interest in our services that has come from word of mouth in the short time we’ve been open for business,” said Despinidic.

“We’ve also been vindicated in our belief that the most important thing brands and marketers need, right now, is an impartial and objective source of expert advice to assist them in making better use of programmatic media tools.

“We have been with programmatic since its entry into the advertising market promising improved marketing Return on Investment, greater efficiencies and the benefits of real-time decision-making on campaign performance,” said Co-founder Jonathan Despinidic.

“Unfortunately, the full benefits of the incredibly sophisticated technology that underpins and supports programmatic media trading are being compromised by an ecosystem that lacks transparency, tolerates fraud and contains too many middlemen clipping the ticket for questionable gain.”

REAL Programmatic’s services include audits of existing programmatic capabilities, providing advice and recommendations on programmatic strategies and tactics through to assistance with implementation and ongoing support, including in-house training and development.

“Brands and marketers have perhaps been too willing to accept the advice of their agencies on strategies and tactics and not confident enough to challenge them on what third-parties they are using, budget allocations, where their money is going and to whom.

“We aim to be that trusted advisor whom they can rely upon to help them realise their programmatic ambitions and to support them in that goal for as long as they need us.”

Real Programmatic’s announcement comes on the same day that IPG Mediabrands has announced its commitment to ensure 100 per cent viewability and eliminate fraud.