Jane King interviewed our CEO Peter Bordes, and Chairman Joe Zawadzki at the NASDAQ on “Innovators with Jane King” where she profiles tech companies and thought leaders in the space, showing shareholders a glimpse of the future of the digital advertising and media industry.

Learn more about Collective Audience research report HERE

What are you building at Collective Audience?

We’re building a next-generation company on several fronts. As the next evolution of our industry with the leading 3.0 advertising, media and data
ecosystem and a Company built on the principles of collective intelligence, and that WE are stronger as a
group than we are as individuals, as an organization, technology applications, and members of our
advisor and shareholder collective community.

We bring together the Lego building blocks that create a rising tide across our modular ecosystem of media, supply, demand, data, and AI applications. Every application we launch or acquire has to create exponential revenue in the new block
and across all the others, or we don’t touch it.

What is the size of the problem the advertising and media industry faces that Collective Audience is addressing?

We are facing significant challenges and changes in the industry. The global digital advertising industry has the potential to reach $1 Trillion by 2030, and faces many friction issues that have built up over the years as it evolved.

• Phase 1. Digital transformation which caused hyper-fragmentation of the advertising and
media industries.
• Phase 2. Where gravity started to create organization and formed today’s silos and walled gardens such as Google and Facebook. Causing critical issues that must be solved. There are too many stand-alone pieces between brands, publishers, and audiences. Causing significant inefficiencies, and margin compression, with to many hops between buyer and seller. Every $1 spent yields $.10 to the publisher and it is not sustainable.
• Phase 3. Is moving to an open interconnected ecosystem that brings the individual components together and unlocks tremendous value enabling brands and publishers to connect directly to the 8 billion global audience participants. If you removed the walled garden of Google you would see a vast interconnected open ecosystem. That’s what we are building.

Joe I would love to get your perspective

The shift to digital continues to grow at a furious pace, accelerating due to areas like CTV, Commerce Media, and Consumer Identity. Throw in AI applications for digital advertising and you have what looks like a wildfire. A generational transition to sophisticated digital marketers is happening, while the number of technology and services offerings in the ad tech and martech space has exploded. Collective Audience applies an outcomes-based lens to solve for digital marketing needs primarily through partnering, as well as building and acquiring the components of a modern media stack. We solve for complexity by leveraging our industry expertise to bring together best-of-breed technologies.

Why do you think this is the time for digital advertising and media to be what companies need to focus on?

The Orwellian flat interconnected world is here. Every industry is being digitally transformed and connected locally, nationally and globally. Our world is running on infrastructure that’s connecting everything and everyone, in real-time, and data is now the new asset class similar to what gold was for the gold rush, and oil to the industrial revolution.

Brands and publishers are now empowered because they generate, own and control the audience data. Creating an extraordinary opportunity for them to build, manage, own and reach consumers directly.

The challenge is not knowing how, there to many fragmented applications vs having a modular platform and partner that empowers them. Not to mention the plethora of other changes such as the deprecation of the cookie, and fraud. There is an opportunity for Collective Audience to own and reshape the industry.

JOE In a fragmented market how do you plan on becoming a major participant?

Success will be driven by listening to the needs of our clients and solving for these requirements. Fortune 2000 companies that are investing more and more dollars in digital will accordingly shift spend to solutions that get them the outcome they require. Successful marketing outcomes will drive spend and scale. Our model allows us to embrace new technologies regardless of the genesis of the technologies, and be their single point of entry to all their needs.

PETER & JOE Can you describe the strategic approach CA is planning to take in the industry, including the importance of partnerships, interests in multiple businesses and acquisitions?
Answer: PETER
We recognize the micro/macro challenges and opportunities in the market that are too extensive for a single company to tackle alone. Operators are stuck. There’s no access to capital or liquidity, They need resources to scale market share. They want to keep building and realize they need to be a part of something bigger that enables them to compete more effectively unlock scale value. This is the power of our collective model.

Answer: JOE
Instead of adhering to the traditional model of attempting to build or acquire everything, we aim to establish a diverse entity that thrives on strong partnerships. By creating minority interests in various businesses, we intend to foster a collective capability to address the market’s needs and navigate the ongoing transformation. This strategy is underpinned by our admiration for Peter’s vision and his proactive approach in assembling a board of directors and leveraging our extended networks, cultivated through 25 to 30 years of combined experience in the industry. This foundation enables us to become a force for positive disruption.

JOE You have a track record as an industry innovator, operator, and venture investor in the private markets. Why are you and all of these veterans coming to join CAUD?

The senior executives we have working with are the folks who know what needs to be done, and with whom, without the distraction that occurs in an industry overwhelmed by the number of companies in the space. They know the problems to be solved and how to get things done. They recognize that digital marketing requires more than one company to solve a marketer’s need and they want to be a part of driving true outcomes-based solutions.

JOE Are there any other companies in the industry adopting a strategy similar to the “collective” approach you’re advocating, as opposed to the more common “walled garden” model?

No, the prevalent model in this space is that of “walled gardens,” where companies have the necessary resources and ambition to tackle big challenges but operate in a way that is fundamentally flawed. In these models, user money and data are collected, with little to no value or information exiting the system. In contrast, our approach is to create an “open garden,” aiming to address the same scale and scope of problems but in a manner that can be collaborative and positive to the ecosystem. This approach is distinct in its commitment to transparency, data freedom, and mutual benefit, setting us apart from others in the industry.

JOE Can you provide examples of companies or entities across various industries that have successfully aligned multiple companies towards a unified purpose, similar to the approach you’re discussing?

Yes, there are notable examples across different countries and industries that illustrate the ability to align multiple companies under a more unified purpose. For instance, Berkshire Hathaway and Rakuten are prime examples of conglomerates that have managed to bring diverse businesses together toward common goals. In Japan, advertising giants like Dentsu and Hakuhodo demonstrate the “keiretsu” system, where businesses form tight-knit alliances to support each other’s growth and success. In Germany, companies like BMW have shown how collaboration within industries can lead to innovation and mutual benefits. However, it’s also noted that in the US, there’s a tendency towards the formation of small oligopolies that dominate the market, which can sometimes stifle competition and innovation. This contrast highlights different approaches to business alignment and collaboration across the globe.

PETER How does the collective business model build enterprise and shareholder value

We’re building enterprise value by having not one, but many legs under the stool as a
foundation for building diverse, sustainable value that drives exponential growth.
• Diverse revenues from SaaS, rev-share, data management, services
• Equity ownership from our joint ventures, and accretive acquisitions that have a multiplier
effect on revenues across our ecosystem.

It’s a hybrid model that builds diverse enterprise value. Think Google as an operating company, meets Berkshire Hathaway, meets Softbank.
This gives us a unique model to be a significant driver of the digital advertising and media industry reaching $1 trillion by 2030.