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Akesios is a U.K.-based firm that began as IT consultants for directory publishers. In September, the company launched a technology platform designed to help publishers quickly launch third-party online applications, and manage the performance of these applications through a single view, leveraging Akesios’ developers and knowledge of complex third-party products (click to call, SEM, video, etc.).

The interesting idea behind Akesios is that publishers need something to improve time to market and efficiency as they get more and more into multiproduct selling, rather than doing all the heavy lifting for each new application that tends to widen the gap between signing a deal and implementing it.

“Speed to market is very important,” Akesios director Caroline Lavelle (a former online manager at Thomson Directories) said in a recent BIA/Kelsey analyst briefing.

She argues that most publishers offering a wide array of third-party solutions struggle with the resources and expertise to tackle the technical challenges involved in launching new products. Akesios will do all this work, and in many cases it has existing relationships with third parties that commonly work with publishers (Marchex is one example).

The company formally launched its platform in September but it has been working with publishers for some time. For example, European Directories is using Akesios to power its Skype application, which embeds blue Skype call buttons into online directory listings to leverage Skype’s user base to drive leads to EDSA customers across eight European markets.

Skype’s Andy Sims will be speaking about the European Directories relationship at BIA/Kelsey’s Interactive Local Media conference, which begins Wednesday in Los Angeles. Akesios is an ILM sponsor.

Thursday, Dec. 10, 2009

3:30 pm – 3:45 pm
Skype’s Local Revolution: The European Directories Partnership
Skype has been a revolutionary force in communications and Internet media, with 480 million worldwide users of its inexpensive, Internet-based calling. Now the local strategy takes hold. Working with Yellow Pages companies, Skype plans to monetize its user base by selling leads to SMB advertisers. We’ll hear about early results, and where these efforts are headed.

Andy Sims, Director of Advertising Programs, Skype

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