Professional Development
Advertising / Hiring / Philadelphia

KOP adtech firm PointRoll hires new CTO: John Galvin

Here's what that means for the digital advertising company, which is owned by publicly-traded media giant Gannett.

Correction: Due to an error on the part of PointRoll representatives, an earlier version of this post claimed John Galvin as the company's first CTO. Galvin is PointRoll's fourth CTO since its founding in 2000, but the first in recent years. The headline and copy have been updated. (9/3/14, 11:23 a.m.)

PointRoll has named a new Chief Technology Officer.

Meet John Galvin, a local tech veteran who has run technology teams at companies big and small for nearly two decades, including two ventures with newly minted Monetate CEO Lucinda Duncalfe.

Most recently, Galvin, 51, of Downingtown, was the CTO at the Exton-based sales software company Hoopla.

It’s a hire that signals a renewed focus on “world-class engineering,” according to the King of Prussia adtech company, which was acquired by publicly-traded media giant Gannett for $100 million in 2005.

PointRoll has more than doubled its tech staff in the last year, said CEO Mario Diez, adding that about half the roughly 300-person team is focused on technology and product development.

The company’s tech team is split between its King of Prussia headquarters, where about 200 staffers work, and its Boston office.

pointroll office

PointRoll expanded its office by 11,000 square feet in July 2014. (Photo courtesy of PointRoll)

It’s also a move that suggests that PointRoll is looking to diversify revenue streams.

Currently, the company works with creative and media agencies to optimize the reach of those agencies’ ads. Their revenue comes from ad-serving fees and from professional services they offer. But PointRoll is considering adding licensing fees to that lineup, Diez said. At Hoopla, Galvin focused on building the company’s software-as-a-service product.

The company offers three types of service to its customers:

  • Self-service, which is focused on customers using PointRoll’s technology on their own,
  • Full service and
  • Managed service, which is a hybrid of the two.

Diez said he couldn’t disclose numbers on the revenue breakdown between the three offerings but that PointRoll’s managed service offering is the biggest. He eyes growth in the other two, he said.

pointroll cubicles

(Photo courtesy of PointRoll)

Diez, 39, of Wyncote, is the fourth CEO of PointRoll since its acquisition nearly a decade ago. He came on in March of 2013, after a seven-year break: he was actually the company’s 13th employee, fresh off the dotcom crash, back when PointRoll was working out of a candy manufacturing plant in Northeast Philly.

Previously, Diez was the CEO of quadrantONE, an advertising company backed by a pack of media companies (Gannett, The New York Times, Hearst and Tribune Company). It shut down in 2013.

PointRoll has seen its fair share of CEO turnover in recent years:

  • Before Diez, Robert Gatto led the company. Gatto, who was originally the company’s SVP of Sales, quit in 2012, saying the commute to King of Prussia was wearing on him (it’s not clear where he lived). Gatto went on to join Silicon Valley adtech company Aggregate Knowledge, cofounded by Doylestown-based Paul Martino and backed by First Round Capital, as president. Aggregate Knowledge got acquired by Neustar one year later for $119 million.
  • Gatto replaced Jason Tafler in February 2011. Tafler, who had led the company for three years, said he wanted to be closer to his family in Canada. Before his appointment as CEO, he was PointRoll’s SVP of Business Operations and Strategy. He also worked in mergers and acquisitions at the Jordan, Edmiston Group, a New York City firm that advised PointRoll on the acquisition, before joining PointRoll. Tafler is now executive vice president of customer experience for Rogers Communication, a Canadian telecom and media giant.
  • Tafler succeeded Chris Saridakis, who rose from COO to CEO at the time of the 2005 acquisition. Saridakis went on to lead ecommerce company GSI Commerce after it was acquired by eBay in March 2011 for $2.4 billion and recently left eBay Enterprise, amid insider trading charges. He pleaded guilty to the charges in May and faces sentencing this month. When asked if the Saridakis case had affected PointRoll, Diez declined to comment.

(Photo courtesy of PointRoll)

In other PointRoll news, the company expanded its King of Prussia office by 11,000 square feet this July, according to a spokesman. The headquarters, which PointRoll has occupied since May 2011, is now 40,000 square feet. PointRoll shares an office building with a daycare center and Aspire Bariatric.

In order to be close to its customers, PointRoll also has offices in major cities across the U.S., including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Detroit.

Companies: Hoopla Software / PointRoll

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