First Hop, the mobile service control company, has recently announced that Blyk, a pan-European free mobile operator for young people funded by advertising, selected First Hop’s Mobile Advertising Solution. Blyk will launch its service in the UK in mid-2007 with plans to extend its coverage into more countries.
Blyk delivers a free mobile phone service for young consumers in return for them interacting with relevant brand advertising. For advertisers Blyk offers a medium to run highly targeted and fully measurable advertising campaigns by using its multiple creative ad formats.
“For advertisers and agencies, Blyk provides advertising inventories in an entirely new way which makes planning, booking and designing mobile media possible like any media is utilised today. First Hop is playing a key role in this infrastructure to make these inventories alive in our service in a reliable, real-time and easy-to-access manner”, said Timo Ahopelto, Head of Strategy and Business Development at Blyk.
First Hop’s solution allows operators and third party advertisers to offer targeted, personalised ad insertion through ad funded services or branded and sponsored content; using person to person messaging, multimedia push and browsing services.
Conventional service platforms were designed to deliver mobile services based on traditional pre-paid and post paid charging models not services based on a free subscription model. Anticipating a shift in the market and recognising the value of mobile advertising to its operator customers, First Hop has developed a system that is optimised for enabling advertising funded and sponsored services. With First Hop’s help and assistance, Blyk was able to deploy the infrastructure needed to power its revolutionary new business model.
Timo T Laaksonen, CEO of First Hop, said: “The strong growth of mobile advertising Ã¢â‚¬â€œ including pure play ad-funded operators like Blyk and growing interest in advertising funded subscription services from our existing operator customers – persuaded us to build a system that would be able to meet the different requirements of a mobile advertising business. It is a system based on usage tracking, profiling and segmentation that enables advertisers to target subscribers with relevant promotions based on their preferences.”
Timo added: “We believe that this new way of doing business will irrevocably change the industry and that eventually all mobile operators and service providers will adopt this business model, to a smaller or larger extent, to drive their core business.”
Vanessa Zheng, an Analyst from Juniper Research supported First Hop’s view: “According to Juniper Research the mobile advertising market will reach Ã‚Â£19.6 billion by 2012. Operators that want to generate revenues in this new market will need to focus on implementing the service delivery platforms that will enable them to profit from this trend.”
About First Hop
First Hop combines mobile service creation, multi-channel delivery, and business management into a single software product suite. Our mission is to drive the value of mobile services through personalisation, intelligent promotion, and multimedia control. First Hop Wireless Broker focuses on service control – the ability for operators and service providers to react to market trends by rapidly implementing new services or service bundles, new business models, subscription types, targeted campaigns, and advertising-funded services.
Founded in 1997, First Hop is privately held and headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, and with sales and support operations in the UK, Spain, United Arab Emirates, India, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. First Hop is globally recognized for our mobile service control expertise, and our products have been chosen by more than 60 mobile operators, such as Vodafone, T-Mobile, and Telefonica.
For more information on First Hop, please visit www.firsthop.com
Blyk is a pan-European free mobile operator for young people, funded by advertising. For advertisers, Blyk is an innovative mobile media channel offering direct engagement with a young audience with real time feedback. Blyk was co-founded in 2006 by Pekka Ala-Pietil and Antti Ã–hrling and has offices in Helsinki, Finland and London, UK. Blyk is launching first in the UK market in mid-2007, with other markets to follow.
For more information on Blyk, please visit http://about.blyk.com