Cross MediaWorks Buys Ad Tech Firm BlackArrow

In a merger of advanced advertising providers to the TV industry, Cross MediaWorks said it acquired BlackArrow. Cross MediaWorks, a large independent media services firm, owns the unwired TV network Cadent. BlackArrow provides software solutions to pay-TV companies reaching 40 million homes including Time Warner Cable, Comcast, Charter, Bright House, Rogers Communications, Liberty Global and Virgin Media. Combined, the companies say they can offer customers a full range of options from self-serve software to fully managed services across all forms of TV inventory.

Nick Troiano, CEO of BlackArrow, will be CEO of Cross MediaWorks. Stephanie Mitchko-Beale, CTO of Cross MediaWorks will be CTO and COO.

"The power of this relationship is our ability to provide a single point of contact for all TV advertising at scale,” said Troiano. “By combining BlackArrow’s multi-platform expertise and advanced advertising technology with Cadent Network’s best-in-class media sales force and deep pay-TV provider relationships, Cross MediaWorks will have the leading technology platform and sales organization across all forms of television viewing."

Founded in 2007, Cross MediaWorks works with media agencies including IPG, WPP, Omnicom, Havas and Publicis on campaigns for brands such as Allstate, Dannon, Dr. Scholl’s, FedEx, Jimmy Dean, Kumon, L’Oreal, Liberty Mutual, Macaroni Grill, Merck, Red Robin, Sears, StubHub and Welch’s.

“We are committed to using data and technology to allow our clients to combine the broad reach and influence of TV with the precision and accountability of digital,” said Todd Gordon, executive VP, U.S. director for IPG’s Magna Global. “Both Cross MediaWorks and BlackArrow have a proven history of delivering in this space and their combination will serve to accelerate progress for our clients at MAGNA GLOBAL and across the industry.”

“Cross MediaWorks and BlackArrow individually have deep roots in the pay-TV community,” said Joan Gillman, executive VP and COO, media services for Time Warner Cable and a member of the Board of Directors of BlackArrow. “The integration of BlackArrow into the Cross MediaWorks family will provide operators with the tools and services they need to maximize revenue from their TV inventory, whether that's traditional linear TV spots or addressable advertising on VOD or OTT platforms”

Troiano will join Barry Baker, former head of Boston Ventures’ communications and entertainment practice, and Bob Wright, former CEO of NBCUniversal, on the Board of Directors of Cross MediaWorks, which is owned by Lee Equity Partners.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.