Quantcast Nabs Yahoo Exec for Its Chief Revenue Officer

Todd Teresi's First Task: Establish the Business Model

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- The big question mark around Quantcast is how it's going to make money off of its system of granular, census-level web-audience measurement -- and it's stolen a top Yahoo executive to help answer that.
Todd Teresi
Todd Teresi

Todd Teresi is joining the web-measurement start-up as chief revenue officer. Mr. Teresi, most recently the head of Yahoo's network business, was at the portal for almost 10 years and previously led corporate development and global operations.

Advancing amid turmoil
Despite having been in the throes of two protracted battles, first with Microsoft over its unsolicited takeover bid and the second with investor Carl Icahn (both resolved, for now), Yahoo has been arguably successful in signing up publishers to its network, nabbing properties such as Comcast and Wal-Mart.

That kind of perseverance will be what Mr. Teresi needs as he goes up against entrenched web-measurement giants Nielsen and ComScore as well as smaller players such as Compete and Hitwise (both of which have been acquired over the past year). Google has its own nascent audience-measurement and ad-planning tool, as well.

Quantcast, which has raised $26 million, including a $20 million B round of investment announced in December, blends panel and census-based measurement with a formula that, it says, corrects for the audience overstatement often attributed to cookie deletion.

Details sketchy
Like Google, Quantcast doesn't charge publishers for measuring audience, or agencies and advertisers for using it for planning purposes. But unlike Google, it doesn't sell ads -- leaving many to wonder what, exactly, its business model will be. To hear it from Mr. Teresi, who officially starts Sept. 1, the business model is one of "enablement."

"We're not going into the ad-network business, so to speak," Mr. Teresi said. "We look at how we enable the existing players to have a better digital-advertising opportunity."

Clear as mud? The company said an actual product rollout would happen within the year. CEO Konrad Feldman said Quantcast's business is built on the idea that display should eventually be as targeted as search ads.

"The tailoring of content and media to individuals should apply to all aspects of advertising, not just the bottom of the funnel," he said. "We operate in unit-based media economy where everyone gets the same content and sees the same ad. We're moving to an impression-based economy. We'll provide the platform that will enable the industry to do that. And as we introduce those sorts of services, we'll charge for them."

"We wish Todd great success in the next chapter of his career," said a Yahoo spokesman in an e-mail. "We've got a deep and talented management team, so we don't expect to miss a beat in the execution of our core strategies."
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