Lucent Alliance Aims for Mobile Ads

Lucent Technologies said it will develop a location-based wireless advertising solution by linking its wireless network infrastructure and mobile Internet platform to Profilium Inc.’s network-based applications and services, through an alliance announced Tuesday by the companies.

Montreal-based Profilium partners with ad agencies and wireless carriers, and uses its technology in conjunction with carriers’ location-based cell identification systems, allowing advertisers to deliver targeted, ads and content to mobile users based on their location and opt-in, anonymous profiles.

Because Profilium acts as an intermediary between the carriers and advertisers, the advertisers don’t see any personally identiafiable user information, including location. Profilium says its technology makes it impossible for anyone but the carrier to know a user’s position.

According to terms of Tuesday’s agreement, the companies will collaborate in testing the connectivity and interoperability of Murray Hill, N.J.-based Lucent’s mobile networks with Profilium’s technology.

“Time-to-revenue is topmost on the mind of mobile operators, and by linking with Profilium we will be able to provide service providers a ready-made solution for realizing new revenues derived from highly customizable m-advertising,” said Sandip Mukerjee, director of product management and marketing-mobile Internet at Lucent.

Profilium says its technology can pinpoint a user’s position to within about a city block, and that capability will increase as cellular carriers enhance their technology to 3G, or high-bandwidth third-generation International Telecommunication Union standards.

“The combination of Lucent’s worldwide leadership in communication and Profilium’s unique mobile advertising platform will accelerate the adoption of network-based solutions for the growing mobile advertising market space,” said Profilium president Alexandre Legendre. “We are pleased to be offering a solution that can be an additional revenue driver for wireless carriers seeking a migration path to 3G.”

Profilium expects to roll out its advertising product in late 2001, and is looking to strike deals with ad agencies to land advertisers. The company recently signed an research and development alliance with the direct marketing unit of Canadian ad group Cossette Communications.

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