Update #2: While Reliance Entertainment declined to comment before this post went up, they subsequently told Alootechie that Kyphy is intended to be an ad network, not an ad marketplace. So, yet another publisher is entering the ad-network space.
Update: That Reliance BIG Entertainment is looking to enter the online advertising space is confirmed, but it appears that the agenda for Kyphy isn’t very clear – whether it is intended to be a network or an exchange. We’ll try and get more clarity from Sudipto Majumdar, former CTO of Zapak, who is leading this project.
Original story: Reliance BIG Entertainment is in the process of launching an advertising marketplace called Kyphy. According to their website, Kyphy will “create an automated advertising exchange to enhance the efficiency of both buying and selling inventory.”
There are a large number of advertising networks in India, but this is the first attempt at an online advertising exchange. This is essentially the marketplace model, which connects both advertiser, ad networks and publishers, and appears to be based on a concept similar to that of the Right Media Exchange; Yahoo had acquired Right Media for $680 million in April last year. Right Media takes a commission of around 10 percent cut from the transaction between advertisers and publishers.
Reliance BIG Entertainment has online properties like BIGFlix (Online Movie Streaming), BIGAdda (social networking), Zapak (Casual and Massively Multiplayer Online Gaming), and will probably sell inventory from their properties as well – thus there is a case for a conflict of interest between the exchange business and publishing business. The exchange will have to be transparent and independent of their websites, and indeed, of an ad network if BIG Entertainment were to launch one.
There have been attempts at advertising exchanges on the Internet in the past in India – Dentsu India launched LastMinuteInventory.com earlier this year, to enable TV channels to sell last minute television inventory. There were some concerns though.
I wonder why Yahoo hasn’t launched Right Media in India, though. I’d former Yahoo CEO George Zacharias the same question when Yahoo had acquired a significant stake in ad network Tyroo, but he hadn’t offered a specific answer.
Update: Reliance Entertainment has declined to comment on Kyphy at this point in time.