AdTech, the Frankfurt-based European subsidiary of Adforce, opened an office in Madrid last month and plans to start operations in Milan “in short order” to be followed later this year with France and possibly Scandinavia. The company also has an office in London.
Spokesman Dirk Freytag said company strategy called for studying markets and picking up clients in them before putting people there and investing in bricks and mortar.
AdTech had seven clients on board before launching in Spain. They include Tiscali, a rapidly growing Italian Internet company with offices in six European countries; I-networks; BPE; and Dinamic Multimedia.
CMGI bought the company, a German start-up founded in January 1998, just a year ago and placed its shares with Adforce. AdTech is a service provider for online marketers with technology that enables delivery of Web advertising.
The parent companies' problems in the United States have not hit the German subsidiary yet, Freytag said.
“We're still in the red, but we're ahead of our business plan and should reach breakeven this year,” he said.
“The dying dot-coms have not affected our business. We continue to grow and are closer to profitability every day. Our clients are networks like ad pepper, online agencies and large sites that market themselves.”
It has 140 clients so far, including The Wall Street Journal Online; Rivals, a sports Web site; and Hmscarat and Framfab, two large Pan-European agencies. AdTech continues to operate independently from U.S. control, “and so long as the numbers are OK, we expect to continue doing so,” Freytag said.
Most of its competitors in Europe are American companies — 24/7 Media, DoubleClick, Real Media's Adstream and even Engage, another CMGI company.