Digital mall makeover under way

May 12, 2006

U.S. malls may soon be undergoing a digital makeover. That's what communications company Publicis Groupe and retail real-estate company Simon Property Inc. hope to make possible, announcing Friday the launch of the first national mall-based digital broadcast network.

Both companies hope the OnSpot Digital Network will "revolutionize the shopping experience by driving marketing closer to upscale consumers" with some 500 million shoppers visiting per year at the 50 Simon Malls that will be served by the new network.

The high-definition digital network will offer lifestyle programming, news, shopping-center content and consumer advertising to shoppers in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago on nearly 2,000 screens positioned in strategic locations throughout the malls.

They hope to complete installation in all 50 by late summer 2006.

And the companies had already undergone an extensive process over the last year testing the digital initiative at Roosevelt Field Mall on Long Island, N.Y., they said.

OnSpot's headquarters will be in Chicago and led by Simon Badinter, Publicis Groupe's chairman, and Stewart Stockdale, Simon Property Group's chief marketing officer and president of Simon Brand Ventures. Both will be serving as co-chairmen of the network.

"By extending the dialogue between a brand and a consumer directly into the shopping environment, we can help brands make a tremendous impact at the time that it matters most: when consumers are poised to make a purchase," Badinter stated.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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