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JICIMS relaunches as UKOM

The UK Online Measurement company established by AOP and IAB to drive progress in online audience measurement

The Joint Industry Committee for Internet Measurement Systems (JICIMS) will be relaunched as the UK Online Measurement company (UKOM), with AOP and IAB as its two key stakeholders.

The move follows the announcement last week that JICIMS was to revise its structure in order to make further progress in the establishment of an online audience measurement system.

Industry-approved online planning currency

As the authoritative voice for UK online audience measurement, UKOM will be run in response to the needs of advertisers, media agencies and online media owners. The company’s first priority is to deliver an industry-approved online planning currency, according to the specification already agreed by the (outgoing) JICIMS Board, and go to market with a revised tender during Q1 2009.

A further goal will be to ensure that the approved solution can be compatible with the existing online population survey - which JICIMS launched in 2006. UKOM will continue towards its shareholders’ ambition of making the population survey the definitive industry benchmark for current data providers.

Industry-wide support

Following an official summit on 15 October 2008, called to assess support for the development of an audience measurement system for online, an industry-wide consensus was reached on the need for a unified single currency which would help accelerate advertiser usage and grow the medium.

The original JICIMS board – AOP, IAB, IPA and ISBA - were charged with gauging the feasibility of a fully-funded JIC and after further pursuit and clarification of all possibilities confirmed they were unable to commit to the level of three year funding that a full JIC model would require.

As the full JIC is no longer an option, the IPA and ISBA subsequently resigned as JICIMS shareholders, however may remain involved in advisory and governance roles to the UKOM board.

"Immense value and benefit"

Bill Murray, the AOP board member responsible for UKOM representation, said: "The speed with which we have brought the revised operation to life, and shared the ambitious timetable we aim to meet, is demonstration of our determination to deliver the immense value and benefit of a unified internet measurement and planning currency to UK media as soon as possible during 2009. These are exciting times for UKOM!"

Guy Phillipson, CEO of the Internet Advertising Bureau said: "All the important technical groundwork has been done, and we're confident UKOM can move quickly to deliver the online planning currency advertisers and agencies have been waiting for."

Peter Bowman, general manager of UKOM said: “We can't lose sight of the fact that this medium will benefit from agreed planning data. After so much emphasis on structure and funding, we can get down to the important business of supplying that data, and allowing everybody to use that data to mutual advantage.”

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