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Airtel Ads by launched in Lagos on Feb 22, 2024, attended by Airtel Africa's Nandu Buty, Anthony Shiner, Priya Thakoor, and's Alexandr Yesayan. (Image source: Airtel Africa)

Airtel Africa has introduced Airtel Ads, Africa's inaugural integrated Demand-Side Platform (DSP), designed to empower advertisers and agencies in efficiently managing, purchasing, and optimising digital ad inventory across various ad exchanges in real-time powers Airtel Ads, specifically crafted for media agencies and businesses, streamlining the advertising space purchasing process. This functionality allows advertisers to make informed decisions regarding ad placement by consolidating diverse tools and functionalities within a unified platform, presenting a comprehensive solution for digital advertising management.

Utilising data from both telecommunications services and mobile wallets, the platform will leverage Airtel Africa's extensive customer base exceeding 150 million. The objective is to target not only digitally engaged individuals but also those traditionally excluded from the digital realm, including the 2G and feature phone user base. Moreover, the platform, through the integrated Airtel Voice Reward Ads, can reach consumers across various devices.

Acknowledging existing limitations in ad performance for organisations, Airtel Ads strives to seamlessly merge all ad networks with Airtel Africa's first-party telecommunications data. This unified advertising platform will feature precise audience segmentation, a dedicated marketing team, data analytics with post-campaign support, native language support, and access to 260+ bidding parameters. Additionally, the platform, fortified by AI-based brand safety tools, will facilitate payments in local African currencies.

Since its inception, the platform has achieved a weekly audience reach of 27 billion impressions, 23.5 million in-app daily impressions, and over 200 million daily SMS notifications, with potential for end-of-SMS tag messaging. The infrastructure upgrades are currently in progress and are anticipated to conclude by the end of June 2024.

Speaking on the launch, Airtel Africa’s chief commercial officer, Anthony Shiner stated, “We are excited to introduce Airtel Ads in Africa. This innovative platform will support advertisers and businesses to gain unprecedented control over their marketing campaigns, leveraging Airtel Africa’s extensive customer base and world class technology. Airtel Ads is a testament to our leadership in shaping the communications landscape in Africa, ensuring businesses are supported to achieve their objectives using data first tools to inform their business decisions.”