NEW YORK: Real-time bidding (RTB) is set to take off in Russia but the market is being held back by a lack of data suppliers, according to industry players.

"Programmatic and RTB has really taken off in the last 18 months and everyone is talking about it," Konstantin Kruglov, deputy CEO of Tinkoff Digital, an ad tech company, told AdExchanger.

Kruglov also suggested that Russian RTB was ahead of the German market in terms of adoption, "though still well behind the UK, US or the Netherlands".

Anya Sverdlov, managing director of Actis Wunderman, agreed that there was increased interest in RTB following its introduction by a major network and the growing number of smaller Russian agencies with access to the technology.

"It hasn't developed yet," she said, but added that "Most people are saying that within the next six months or so we will really see that blossom in Russia."

Anna Kolesnikova, chief executive of digital agency Media Set, observed that the RTB market was "very young" and still at an experimental stage.

"The other thing is that we do not have a lot of data suppliers, those with data management platforms," she said. "It significantly narrows the possibilities of how RTB can be used in Russia."

Another factor holding back the development of RTB was suggested by Nikolai Danilov, head of technology sales for Yandex, the leading search engine in Russia.

"The role of advertising networks in display is not as large as it is in the US or in Europe," he said, "and advertisers and agencies actually try to have more control on the web properties they choose for the ad campaign."

The development of Russian agencies was noted by Kruglov. "There are many innovative local players building both demand and supply side solutions across not only display, but also the mobile and video spaces," he added.

The leading players in the RTB market include Yandex, Between Digital, AdFox, AdRiver, Tinkoff Digital and Kavanga. And Kolesnikova noted the banking, automotive sales, insurance, and ecommerce sectors were especially interested.

A more cautious note was sounded by Boris Omelnitskiy, president of IAB Russia. "Mobile and online video is far from RTB in Russia, just blah-blah at conferences," he said.

Data sourced from Ad Exchanger; additional content by Warc staff