NBCUniversal has launched a new streaming advertising business that is designed to facilitate access to its local TV network on behalf of local and regional connected TV (CTV) and over-the-top (OTT) advertisers.

Called NBC Spot On, the new venture is said to provide local advertisers with “unfettered access to brand-safe long-form premium inventory that is fully owned or directly purchased”.

A company announcement further stated that NBC Spot On has the means to activate complex CTV/OTT campaigns across all designated market areas in the US as well as NBCUniversal’s sports regional networks.

And as NBC Spot On is a division of NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations, which includes 42 NBC and Telemundo stations and their subsidiary digital businesses in 30 markets, together they can reach 38% of US households and Puerto Rico, the company said.

“Launching with such a large pool of owned inventory, we can instantly bring tremendous value to our clients,” said Shawn Makhijani, SVP of NBC Spot On and business development and strategy for the owned stations division.

“By supplementing our owned inventory with directly acquired premium third-party inventory, clients can now, through a single buy, achieve the needed scale and efficiency for even the most complex buys,” he added.

Makhijani went on to tell the Wall Street Journal that the new business aims to take a “chunk” of local ad budgets dedicated to streaming platforms. “We think this is going to be the fastest growing part of the division,” he said.

And with more advertisers shifting adspend to mid-roll ads in longer videos, such as the streaming of live events or full TV episodes, that will be another key focus for NBC Spot On.

“The mid-roll business is what everybody is after because that’s against premium long-form content,” Makhijani said.

He added that the company also intends to offer more data-based audience targeting capabilities for its local advertisers – a function that until now has been available only at the national level.

“Data targeting always broke down when you went to the local level because there wasn’t enough scale,” said Makhijani.

Sourced from NBCUniversal, Wall Street Journal; additional content by WARC staff