Interep – America’s largest independent national spot radio representative – is preparing to launch an electronic system to assist the invoicing of media buyers.
The group is planning to roll out a new version of its RadioExchange service. This updated offering – currently under test in New York by Entercom Communications and Carat USA– will be radio’s first electronic data interchange (EDI) system that allows the reconciliation of invoices with orders.
RadioExchange is a web-based service allowing media buyers to exchange information with ‘rep’ firms and radio broadcasters. The updated version will be handed to agencies and station groups later in 2003.
Interep claims new technology will save radio firms over $100 million (€92m; £64m) in billings that could otherwise be lost using current methods. It is feared the sector will suffer unless radio catches up with other media in the development of electronic invoice systems.
“Currently radio requires a disproportionate amount of time to process compared to most other media,” commented Carat USA’s chief financial officer John Keanna.
Interep has also offered its only competitor – Clear Channel unit Katz Media, which has been developing its own EDI scheme – the chance to join it in rolling out the system.
Data sourced from: MediaWeek.com; additional content by WARC staff