News Briefs


Stingray, InStore Audio Network Become One Entity


Stingray Group has completed its full integration with InStore Audio Network after acquiring the company in January. The combined entity of the U.S. and Canadian operations is now named Stingray Advertising. Located throughout North America, this in-store audio advertising network now reaches 140 million shoppers each week in over 20,000 grocery retailers, superstores, discount stores and pharmacies, according to a news release.

Stingray Advertising delivers targeted audio messaging to shoppers in a “captive media environment” at the point-of-purchase, per the release. This integration focuses on leveraging new technology and providing retailers a way to monetize in-store audio while offering CPG and health and beauty care brands a democratized marketing tool to reach shoppers with out-of-home media.

The current network includes retailers such as Ahold Delhaize, Albertsons/Safeway, Brookshires, CVS Pharmacy, Jean Coutu, Metro, Rite Aid, Southeastern Grocers, Tops Markets, Walmart Canada and Weis Market with coverage across Canada and in every designated marketing area (DMA) in the U.S.

“With the recent addition of Walmart Canada into our retail media network plus our use of COMMB [(Canadian Out Of Home Marketing & Measurement Bureau)] and Geopath for proven audience measurement and Hivestack for a versatile programmatic buying solution, we have proven our effectiveness and reliability to our current advertiser base,” said Ryan Fuss, senior vice president of Stingray Advertising, in the release. “Our retail footprint, along with both traditional media buying and programmatic options, positions Stingray Advertising as a top media solution for every brand sold in retail store – as well as non-endemic brands seeking to reach a captive audience of engaged consumers directly in the retail environment.”

In addition to retail media, Stingray Advertising aims to help brands connect to audiences across the Stingray multiplatform ecosystem through broadcast and streaming media, which includes concerts, shows, music videos, TV audio channels and radio stations as well as music and soundscapes across web, mobile and FAST (free ad-supported streaming TV) touchpoints.

Stingray also offers a range of tech-driven solutions to share with retailers to elevate the in-store and customer experience including Stingray Business’ licensed background music and digital signage as well as Chatter by Stingray’s AI-driven customer insights tool that enables brands to take action through their customer experience.

Effective immediately, all brand identity, logos and corporate communication will reflect the Stingray Advertising brand.


Cooler Screens Adds Talent to Leadership & Advisory Teams

a person standing in front of a store

In response to accelerated growth, Cooler Screens, which operates an in-store digital media and merchandising platform for retail, is expanding its leadership and advisory board with top talent to help facilitate the expansion of its platform and improve the in-store experience, according to a news release.  

Cooler Screens' leadership team additions include former Amazon veteran Lindell Bennett as chief revenue officer and Shelly Schaffer as chief financial officer. In addition, Cooler Screens’ chief customer experience and operating officer John Gomez was promoted and will take on additional responsibilities as president while retaining his former responsibilities.

As chief revenue officer, Bennett will focus on helping brands capture the attention of customers already in the aisle, to build brand equity and increase sales simultaneously. His goals include establishing an insights-led revenue organization, strengthening the direct sales team, expanding distribution of Cooler Screens through programmatic partnerships, helping agency partners activate new in-store media opportunities and developing deeper omnichannel measurement for brands.

During his 10 years at Amazon, Bennett held several U.S. roles. He also spent time in Asia, leading the mid-market and enterprise sales teams for Japan, while also launching Amazon's first ad sales team in China. He also started and led the task force that built Amazon's narrative and reporting framework and was a key contributor to its brand-building and omnichannel measurement suites.

As chief financial officer, Schaffer brings more than three decades of experience in financial and strategic planning, investor relations, business development, compliance and governance to her new role at Cooler Screens, where she will be instrumental in accelerating and broadening growth across the ecosystem of retailers, brands, agencies, resellers and programmatic partners. Her extensive background has focused on technology and software, online platforms and branded consumer products in public, private and venture-backed companies, including the Coca Cola Co.,, Yahoo, Mercury Interactive, Catalina Marketing and Nestle.

Gomez, now Cooler Screens' president, chief consumer experience officer and COO, executed Cooler Screens' expansion in Walgreens, Kroger, Giant Eagle, Chevron and CVS Pharmacy stores. Prior to joining Cooler Screens, he was president and CEO of KKR-owned Cardenas Markets. He also served as executive vice president of operations, marketing and merchandising at Trader Joe's and chief operating officer at Argo Tea.

Cooler Screens has also added three growth and innovation experts to the startup's advisory board: Andrew Appel, former president and CEO of the predictive analytics service IRI; Andrew Hill, chief data officer of global CPG marketer Unilever; and John Clavadetscher, who is transitioning from his full-time role as Cooler Screens' president and chief commercial officer.


Dick’s ‘House of Sport' Concept Adds Like-Minded Wellness Products


Dick’s Sporting Goods has partnered with PlantFuel Life, a plant-based wellness company, to offer the manufacturer's products at the retailer’s “House of Sport” in-store retail experience stores in June.

In 2021, Dick’s began opening its House of Sport concept stores designed to drive destination shopping. The interactive, experiential stores feature outdoor turf field and running tracks, rock-climbing walls, batting cages, golf hitting bay simulators, putting greens, health and wellness centers for recovery and wellbeing, and consolidated service areas for breaking in gloves, stringing lacrosse sticks, repairing bikes and more offerings.

PlantFuel is a premium plant-based health and wellness company founded by former National Football League player and entrepreneur Brad Pyatt. Rolling out in June, PlantFuel products will be available in Dick’s House of Sports locations within the health and wellness centers. Initial products available at the retailer will include All-in-One Nutrition, a plant-based protein; Performance Protein, a vegan-fermented plant-fueled; All-in-One Pre-Workout; All-in-One Recovery supplements to reduce soreness and recovery time; and Daily Immunity + Hydration to strengthen the immune system.

"Dick’s is the pinnacle of sports retail, and House of Sport represents the future of experiential shopping, so we're honored to partner with such a forward-thinking company to continue leading the plant-based health and wellness category," said Brad Pyatt, PlantFuel CEO, in a news release.

This partnership with Dick’s aims to further PlantFuel's strategic channel and distribution growth strategy, while also aligning with the retailer’s mission of combining “true integrated experiences with premium products to create an authentic connection,” per the release.


EnsembleIQ Leader Honored in the Information Services Industry


EnsembleIQ CEO Jennifer Litterick has been honored as a Change-Maker in the Information Services Industry by the Top Women in Media and Ad Tech Awards. The annual awards program, produced by AdExchanger and AdMonsters, celebrates leaders who have made an impact in the digital media and advertising technology community.

Litterick will also participate as a panelist on a c-suite panel discussion on the “Current State of the Industry” at the 2022 MediaGrowth Summit on June 15. Other panel participants include Paras Maniar, CEO of Bobit and John Yedinak, president and co-founder of Aging Media Network. Craig Fuller, CEO of FreightWaves will moderate the session.

“It is a privilege to be recognized by AdExchanger and AdMonsters as a leader in the information services industry. EnsembleIQ’s success can be attributed to the hard work and dedication of the entire EnsembleIQ team, and I am pleased to share this accomplishment with them,” said Litterick in a company news release. “I am passionate about the advancement of the information services industry, and I look forward to sharing my insights at the Summit.”

Litterick was appointed CEO of EnsembleIQ to define and execute a new company vision. She specializes in turning challenged businesses into high-performing assets by quickly assessing changing market opportunities, talent needs and core strategy to ensure revenue and growth objectives are reached. Litterick rebuilt the EnsembleIQ executive leadership team with a focus on innovation, and she created a performance-based culture rooted in nurturing and recruiting high-performing employees driving company growth. 

Most recently, EnsembleIQ was named a “Best Place to Work in Chicago” by workplace culture evaluation firm Comparably based on a survey of company employees, who also gave Litterick high ratings for her exceptional leadership.


EnsembleIQ Adds VP Of Marketing

a person posing for the camera

EnsembleIQ has nabbed Jesse Yeung to join the company as its vice president of marketing, a newly created role. Yeung will be responsible for EnsembleIQ’s marketing strategy including brand marketing and marketing communications and operations that fuel audience engagement, revenue and business growth. 

Yeung joins EIQ from Informa Connect, where he most recently served as the marketing director, and was responsible for leading an integrated marketing strategy for digital and event brands in the restaurant, foodservice, catering, grocery, meetings and special events industries. A strategic and data-driven marketer, Yeung has extensive audience development, demand generation, content marketing and event marketing expertise supporting B2B content and event brands. Prior to Informa, Yeung worked at publishing company Penton.

“We are fortunate to have [Yeung] to lead our marketing efforts. He brings a wealth of experience in the business-to-business foodservice, grocery and meetings/events industries to this important position. [Yeung’s] role is vital to increasing awareness of EnsembleIQ and our properties in retail, healthcare and hospitality,” said Joe Territo, SVP, content and communications, in a company news release.


Mosaic Fills New SVP of U.S. Commerce Role

a man wearing a suit and tie smiling at the camera

Integrated marketing agency Mosaic North America has appointed Tony Ciresi as senior vice president of commerce in the U.S. He will report to co-managing partner Debbie Kaplan.

As SVP of commerce, Ciresi will lead the practice, serving as Mosaic's shopper marketing expert in the U.S. Drawing upon 20 years of industry experience, he will collaborate with agency teams in driving innovation in the space. Ciresi will also lead a team of VP- and director-level employees to further innovate and incorporate the agency’s commerce expertise into its integrated marketing practice, across both organic and new business.

Ciresi will work closely with clients to advise on commerce agendas and key trends. His input will play a key part in optimizing marketing investments across consumer and trade budgets in today's constantly evolving retail landscape, according to a company news release.

Ciresi joins Mosaic from VMLY&R Commerce, where he was EVP, client engagement. In that role, he acted as a client advisor, overseeing delivery of client engagement relationships and was a key contributor in helping to articulate each client's market needs, develop business models and identify key business challenges.