Gas pump TV news: one network merges, another expands

February 14, 2011 by Dave Haynes

A couple of pieces of news from the gas pumps of America – at least those that have screens on them.

Word came out this morning that Outcast Media and PumpTop TV, which has DOOH networks at gas stations and c-stores, is merging with the Health Club Media Network, which has screens in guess where.

The merger, which will operate as Outcast, produces a combined network reach of 68 million viewers a month, across  120 U.S. media markets. All told, there are some 37,600 digital and static displays running content.

The merger follows an earlier merger Outcast did with former rival PumpTop TV.

Says the release:

Parthenon Capital Partners, a growth-oriented private equity firm and current investor in HCMN, will invest new equity capital in the combined company to fuel continued growth and expansion. Outcast has also secured bank financing from Silicon Valley Bank. Matthew Stoudt and Nathan Gill will lead the management team as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Revenue Officer, respectively.

“This consolidation represents the natural extension of both companies’ strategy to build a network dedicated to reaching the active, on-the-go consumer, at a point of influence,” said Stoudt. “With the strong support of Parthenon Capital Partners and PumpTop TV’s advanced technology platform, we will be able to rapidly expand our footprint and product offering to better serve our advertisers and venue partners.”

Outcast will initially operate the new company as two channels with a common purpose of reaching active consumers in spend-ready environments. Outcast’s PumpTop TV network reaches active consumers at the pump via 11,000 one-to-one high definition displays. HCMN, which will be run as a division of Outcast, reaches active consumers inside almost 4,000 health clubs through a combination of high definition digital and static displays.

Following on that, and possible triggered by that news, rival Gas Station TV announced 2010 ad sales were brisk and they are expanding AND hiring.

In a release, GSTV is trumpeting “triple-digit” revenue growth in 2010 over 2009, as well as record EBITDA, operating profit margin, and net income for 2010.

Due to the company’s sustained financial success and adoption of the video-at-the-pump medium by advertisers, GSTV will be doubling its network size in the next 12 months. Expansion will include over 50 new markets (bringing GSTV to over 150 markets nationwide), plus additional stations added in GSTV’s current markets, further solidifying GSTV’s position as the only national presence in video at-the-pump.

“We are happy to report the continued success of our company and that it will lead to accelerated expansion due to high demand. As we significantly expand our national footprint this year, and more advertisers use GSTV to fill the gaps in their media mix with our DVR-proof television platform, we need great people to join and help us with this rapid growth,” said David Leider, CEO of Gas Station TV.

As a result, GSTV is currently recruiting for multiple positions open in Detroit, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago in departments such as IT, creative, business development and sales.

Lieder takes a bit of a swipe at Outcast and other groups that are consolidating disparate networks and selling them as one, suggesting the better way forward is to focus and largely own a vertical.

“The recent merger of some of our gas competitors with other non-gas media assets leaves GSTV as the only major player 100% focused on video at-the-pump,” Leider said. “Many deal promoters have extolled the virtues of bundling disparate media assets, purporting advertiser efficiencies. However trying to be all things to all people usually results in a negative for the client. We remain confident that ‘Gas is King,’ and we will continue setting the standard for viewer experience and customer service across the largest national footprint at our corporate gas retail partners.”

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