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Publisher Engagement and Revenue Solutions Leader, Insticator,…

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Combining forces with OKO allows us to provide [publishers] with a single place to acquire, consolidate and analyze the full breadth of their engagement and monetization data.

Insticator, a global leader in engagement and revenue solutions for publishers, today announced the acquisition of ad management solutions provider, OKO, to expand its mission of deepening publishers’ relationships with their audiences.

The combined entity will create a unified platform for publishers to achieve their audience and revenue goals, and consolidate their direct user data into one source. In doing so, Insticator will further empower publishers to gain insights into their audiences in order to boost engagement and optimize ad monetization.

Previously, publishers required multiple vendors, serving multiple purposes, in order to realize these objectives. In uniting these distinct disciplines, publishers are now able to realize cost efficiencies by shortening their supply chains, minimize data-leakage and fraud risk, and provide persistent identity and targeting capabilities for advertisers.

Moreover, the respective expertise of the two organizations will come together to offer best-in-class guidance and support to its publisher partners. The Insticator and OKO teams will remain intact, integrating more fully over the next six months. Each will continue to serve their constituencies as they have been during the transition.

“With the end of cookies in sight, publishers are seeking new, effective ways to better understand their audiences. Combining forces with OKO allows us to provide them with a single place to acquire, consolidate and analyze the full breadth of their engagement and monetization data,” said Insticator Founder and CEO Zack Dugow. “We are very impressed with what Mat and the OKO team have built and we are excited that they will be joining us. They are incredibly skilled in the world of ad management, and their expertise perfectly complements our experience in audience engagement. With OKO under the Insticator umbrella, the whole is bigger than the sum of its parts.”

“Publisher monetisation is consistently evolving and we are very excited to join forces and navigate those changes with a company like Insticator,” said Mat Bennett, OKO Founder and CEO. “I already see this relationship bringing immediate benefits to OKO and Insticator publisher partners alike. Most important is the greater value our combined capabilities will offer. I am impressed at how aligned our visions of publisher monetisation are despite coming from very different starting points. Both OKO and Insticator are driven to deliver monetisation that enhances user experience rather than detracts from it. Together we will achieve that vision.”

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ABOUT INSTICATOR

Insticator is the global leader in increasing engagement for publishers. Our suite of engagement products empowers publishers and consumers alike to amplify their voices and express their opinions in safe, interactive environments. From our human-moderated Commenting Unit that facilitates healthy, respectful discourse, to our Content Engagement Unit that enables audiences to share their opinions and interact with content that speaks directly to them, Insticator reaches over 350 million consumers monthly across our vast network of premium publishing partners including Ancestry, WebMD, Fox Sports, RealClear Media Group and more. Headquartered in New York and Miami, Insticator’s global footprint spans the US, Canada, India, the Philippines, Ukraine and the UK. Visit i nsticator.com to learn more.

ABOUT OKO

OKO are pioneers in the field of publisher revenue management and optimization. Our small, specialised team work in close partnership with publishers around the globe to grow and sustain their advertising revenues through a blend of technology, access to high-performing products and expert coaching. OKO are proud to have been awarded the prestigious Google Certified Publishing Partner status and were the first UK company to be recognised by Google in the field of publisher monetization. Visit oko.uk for more information.

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Source: https://www.prweb.com/releases/publisher_engagement_and_revenue_solutions_leader_insticator_acquires_oko_a_leading_global_ad_management_platform/prweb17903737.htm

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‘SNL’ host Elon Musk takes a Saturday off from Tesla’s troubles

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By Joseph White

DETROIT (Reuters) – Elon Musk’s turn as host of this week’s “Saturday Night Live” television program will be a light-hearted, brand-building break from the pressures of running Tesla Inc and SpaceX – or land the billionaire in another bucket of hot water.

That uncertainty appears to be the point for both Musk and NBCUniversal’s <CMCSA.O> venerable comedy sketch show.

Musk has been encouraging fans and detractors to anticipate shenanigans, potentially involving the Dogecoin cryptocurrency. Musk has touted Dogecoin on his Twitter account, and the cryptocurrency’s value has soared ahead of his appearance.

“I’m a wild card, no telling what I might do,” Musk, wearing a black bandana, joked in a brief promotional video for the show alongside Saturday’s musical guest, Miley Cyrus.

“Same here,” Cyrus said. “Rules? No thanks.”

Musk has been in New York this week preparing for the appearance. A photo posted to the “Saturday Night Live” Twitter account on Wednesday showed him hunched over papers, wearing a “Nuke Mars” T-shirt. Musk has mused about using nuclear weapons to reshape the Red Planet for human habitation.

Some “SNL” cast members have expressed displeasure at the show’s decision to give its platform to one of the world’s richest people. Musk’s appearance has drawn comparisons to the show’s controversial decision in 2015 to invite Donald Trump to host as he was preparing for his presidential run.

Although it is rare for a business executive to host “SNL,” South Africa-born Musk, 49, is no stranger to pop culture or comedy.

He has appeared on “The Simpsons,” “Rick and Morty,” and “South Park,” and dates a pop star, Canadian singer Grimes. Musk’s persona helped inspire Robert Downey Jr’s portrayal of superhero Iron Man in a series of Marvel films.

His humor also shows in the names of Tesla car models S, 3, X and Y (“sexy”). He once built and sold flamethrowers to promote his tunnel venture, the Boring Company. In 2018, Musk smoked marijuana on a live web show, and later offered $420 a share – a drug reference – to take Tesla private.

While Musk has been getting ready for the cameras, Tesla has been in a rough patch.

Longtime major shareholder Baillie Gifford disclosed it had sold 41% of its Tesla shares. Police in California are investigating a fatal accident in which a Tesla crashed into an overturned truck. Documents prepared by California regulators said Tesla executives do not believe Tesla can deliver the “Full Self Driving” autonomous vehicle technology this year, contradicting Musk’s statements.

(Reporting By Joe White, Editing by Nick Zieminski)

Image Credit: Reuters

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Source: https://datafloq.com/read/snl-host-elon-musk-takes-saturday-teslas-troubles/14510

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U.S. Commerce chief cites auto chips shortage in jobs report

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said on Friday the semiconductor shortage was a factor in April’s jobs report that showed hiring unexpectedly slowed.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the auto sector shed 27,000 jobs in April as automakers were forced to cancel production shifts and furlough workers amid the chips shortage.

“We’re working very hard to get the president’s plan passed in Congress to fund a semiconductor fund. The fact of the matter is we need to get back into the business of making more chips in America. And the supply chain issues are very real,” Raimondo told MSNBC.

(Reporting by David Shepardson and Susan Heavy; Editing by Chris Reese)

Image Credit: Reuters

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Source: https://datafloq.com/read/us-commerce-chief-cites-auto-chips-shortage-jobs-report/14509

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U.S. auto part makers brace for a bumpy ride as chip shortage to intensify

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By Ankit Ajmera

(Reuters) -U.S. auto parts suppliers warned of more production cuts at major automakers as a global semiconductor chip shortage worsens before easing in the second half of the year and aiding in a partial recovery of lost sales.

The chip shortage came at an inopportune time for automakers as demand rebounded from pandemic lows due to low interest rates and consumers’ preference for personal transport amid the health crisis.

“We’ve embedded a 3% reduction in industry production to factor in what we’re anticipating and expecting as further announced downtime that hasn’t been publicly announced at this point,” Lear Corp Chief Financial Officer Jason Cardew said on Friday.

“We have line of sight on a more meaningful reduction (in production) in the second quarter than IHS Markit and others are projecting,” Cardew said.

Ford Motor Co, a major customer for Lear and peers including BorgWarner and Magna International, has said the chip shortage would halve its vehicle output in the second quarter.

Europe’s Volkswagen, another customer for the three suppliers, has said it is in “crisis mode” over the lack of badly needed automotive chips, with the shortage intensifying and hitting its profits in the second quarter.

Lear, which makes automotive seating, cut its global vehicle production forecast to a 9% rise, from up to 12% it had predicted at the beginning of the year, while also expecting second-quarter revenue to fall 9% from the first.

Auto suppliers also cautioned that the pain from the shortage could linger at least until the next year.

“We don’t expect the supply/demand imbalance to fully recover to normalized levels until 2022,” said Joseph Massaro, chief financial officer of Aptiv, a maker of advanced driver assistance systems, vehicle computers and high-voltage cabling.

Auto suppliers are also grappling with pressure on their margins from rising costs of key inputs such as steel and copper.

However, many expect to offset some of those costs as automaker customers focus on building higher margin, more profitable pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles.

“On the biggest raw material purchases, we have about 60% pass through with our customers,” BorgWarner Chief Executive Officer Frederic Lissalde said.

Still, most suppliers have raised or reaffirmed their full-year financial outlooks, thanks to the better-than-expected performance in the first quarter.

Analysts highlighted risks associated with the production outlooks from some suppliers as chip demand rises from other sectors such as enterprise, cloud and consumer electronics following speedy COVID-19 vaccinations and economies reopening.

“The question in my mind is can this (production loss) be made up later on in the year. And that’s really an unknown,” Magna Chief Financial Officer Vincent Galifi said.

(Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

Image Credit: Reuters

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Source: https://datafloq.com/read/us-auto-part-makers-brace-bumpy-ride-chip-shortage-intensify/14508

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Auto sector urges U.S. Congress to help fund its computer chip needs

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By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. auto industry and United Auto Workers union on Friday urged Congress to tie billions of dollars in government funding to boost semiconductor production to help fill the needs of automakers forced to slash production because of chip shortages.

Congress “should prioritize production of the semiconductors necessary to assemble vehicles here in the United States. This will ensure that motor vehicle manufacturers have a fair share of chips needed to meet consumer demand,” said the American Automotive Policy Council, Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association and UAW on Friday in a joint statement.

Tech companies and other industries have repeatedly urged the administration not to pick “winners and losers” or attach conditions to funding to address the chip shortage.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said the U.S. motor vehicle and parts sector lost 27,000 jobs in April.

The letter seen by Reuters said the U.S motor vehicle industry is estimated to have lost over 330,000 production units as a result of the chip shortage.

Carmakers across the world curbed output, hampering attempts to recover from the pandemic, due to a shortage of chips used in everything from computer management of engines to driver assistance systems.

The global chip shortage hit automakers hard after many canceled orders when plants were idled during the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, demand for chips boomed from consumer electronics makers churning out premium devices for people spending more time at home.

Automakers have warned the chips crisis could last until 2022 and have pressed the U.S. government to act.

Ford Motor Co last week warned the shortage may slash second-quarter production by half and for 2021, cost it about $2.5 billion and about 1.1 million units of lost production.

President Joe Biden has proposed $50 billion to boost U.S. semiconductor production.

The letter urged the government to “include specific funding for semiconductor facilities that commit to dedicating a portion of their capacity to motor vehicle-grade chip production.”

On Friday, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers and Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute urged Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to ensure chip supplies are “fairly allocated across industry sectors.”

The groups said they were “dismayed” Raimondo said she was seeking to prioritize automakers. “We simply ask for fairness so that the health, safety, comfort, productivity, and other needs of Americans can be met,” they wrote.

The department did not immediately comment. Raimondo told MSNBC Friday that the auto chip crisis was a factor in April’s jobs report. The auto sector shed 27,000 jobs in April.

(Reporting by David ShepardsonEditing by Chizu Nomiyama, Keith Weir and David Gregorio)

Image Credit: Reuters

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Source: https://datafloq.com/read/auto-sector-urges-us-congress-help-fund-computer-chip-needs/14507

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