The European Programmatic TV Initiative aims to support the development and growth of programmatic advertising in Europe’s major TV markets


A consortium including The Trade Desk, PubMatic, Equativ, Magnite, Cadent and Adform, in collaboration with The Project X Initiative (PXI) and European broadcasters, streamers, and agency groups have launched the European Programmatic TV Initiative (EPTVI).

Programmatic technologies use data and automation to streamline ad buying and delivery against TV content across different platforms. The tech enhances efficiency, targeting, and measurement, but currently there are barriers to its success, say the companies behind the launch of the EPTVI.

Many of Europe’s commercial broadcasters have developed advanced sales platforms but are still restricted in their engagement with the wider programmatic ecosystem. Concerns about the commoditisation of premium TV inventory and a loss of control over data and client relationships are significant barriers, says the EPTVI.

Meanwhile, ad agencies and advertisers would prefer to use a more limited number of buying tools to achieve operational efficiencies, rather than navigating numerous proprietary media owner platforms.

As a result, the full potential of programmatic TV is yet to be realised, says the EPTVI.

Estimates suggest connected-TV advertising spend in Europe will amount to just 10% of linear TV advertising in 2024 compared to 38% in the US, and there’s little consensus about the way forward.

This initiative aims to address these challenges by bringing together key stakeholders from across TV advertising, including broadcasters, streamers, TV platform providers, agencies, and advertisers.

The members of the Initiative plan to work closely and collaboratively with participants across the European market, exploring critical challenges and looking for practical solutions that can support buyers and sellers.

The Initiative’s objectives are to:

•       Establish clear definitions and terminology for programmatic TV to create a common understanding across the industry.

•       Set out the potential benefits and drawbacks of the shift to programmatic TV and identify ways to mitigate concerns and barriers to adoption.

•       Showcase successful programmatic TV campaigns across Europe to demonstrate its effectiveness and inspire others.

•       Develop a roadmap for the future development of programmatic TV in Europe, with recommendations for different stakeholders.

The initiative will culminate in an industry summit and report in the autumn.

Hitesh Bhatt, senior director, CTV/OTT, EMEA at PubMatic said: “The European TV landscape has long been challenged by being very fragmented, and this has hindered the development of a standardised programmatic ecosystem. It’s time to get everyone – from broadcasters and streamers to OEMs and agencies – around the table to try and address this so that we can enable TV in Europe to thrive amidst huge changes in viewing behaviour and media buying practices.

Through our partnership with PXI, we aim to help all players build their programmatic capabilities and develop innovative approaches that will simplify what is currently a complex ad trading landscape. As established digital players enter the TV space with years of data-driven experience behind them, we need to embrace a collaborative spirit to establish best practices and unlock programmatic TV’s full potential.”

Teiffyon Parry, chief strategy officer at Equativ added: “We are excited to be part of the PXI project, working alongside industry thought-leaders to tackle programmatic and CTV fragmentation in Europe. As a pioneer in this space, Equativ can contribute expertise and help unify standards. Through our collaboration with PXI, we aim to drive advancements in the ecosystem, creating better experiences for advertisers and media owners. It’s energising to be part of this common effort to develop a strategic and practical vision and design a cohesive roadmap for the future of programmatic TV and video. Here’s to breaking down barriers and building a more connected industry.”

Julie Selman, head of EMEA revenue, Magnite said: “As the programmatic TV market continues to evolve, Magnite is looking forward to collaborating with The Future of Programmatic TV in Europe Initiative and key players in the industry to assess and highlight the benefits, challenges and opportunities and how best to work together to move the industry forward. Dynamic market needs play a critical role in how to tackle these conversations across EMEA and Magnite’s local expertise, insights and technology will contribute to this effort as we jointly draft a roadmap for the future of TV across EMEA.”

Marcy Pentoney, SVP, product, Cadent added: “Joining the Project X Initiative is an exciting step towards unifying and growing the fragmented programmatic TV landscape in Europe. As a long-established ad enablement provider in the UK and Europe, Cadent seeks to understand how we can further support the market with our data-driven solutions and provide value to buyers and sellers. By fostering deeper collaboration among broadcasters, streamers, OEMs and agencies, we can create a more cohesive and efficient ecosystem that adapts to evolving media consumption patterns and delivers better experiences for advertisers and viewers alike. Together, we can drive innovation and establish best practices for the future of programmatic advertising in Europe.”

Stefan Sommer, senior vice president, global sales & partnerships, Adform added: “We’re thrilled to join the European Programmatic TV Initiative. This collaboration represents a unique opportunity for open conversations between key broadcasters, clients, and technology providers, aiming to address critical challenges in CTV such as measurement and targeting. Our extensive experience in driving successful CTV campaigns across multiple countries allows us to share valuable insights that can unlock new revenue streams. We are eager to explore how CTV and linear TV can complement each other, enhancing overall media strategies. As Europe’s leading DSP, we recognise the importance of tailored approaches for each market and believe this initiative will help establish best practices and lay the groundwork for universal metrics and regulation.”