Margaux Matrix offers TV monitoring service

New technology created by Margaux Matrix is set to revolutionise the sports marketing and television product placement arena.

The Surrey-based company, founded by Joseph Sweeney, the former commercial controller at Scottish TV, and his partner, Steve Burgess, has created an electronic image recognition service that picks up on-screen brand exposure.

The technology will put an end to the traditional method of measuring brand exposure - a person using a stopwatch.

Instead, image-recognition software will automatically pick up the brand image and record the duration of its on-air exposure.

Although the technology already exists to measure two-dimensional brand images on websites, Margaux Matrix claims its technology will be able to recognise moving and distorted images where only part of the brand is shown.

Although Margaux Matrix will measure the channel, time and duration of on-air brand exposure and not the value, the service could have implications in measuring the value advertisers derive from advertising at televised events and from product placement in television programmes.

Sweeney and Burgess set up Margaux Matrix 18 months ago after meeting at the management consultant Cap Gemini Ernst & Young. Their company has ten private shareholders including John Blakemore, the former UK advertising director of GlaxoSmithKline.

The service will test launch with a brand in October and Margaux Matrix is confident it will be fully up and running at the beginning of next year.

Andy Bolden, GSK's UK advertising director, said he was interested in using the system. "What appeals to me is that this side of the industry is increasingly in demand but is currently unaccountable. I hope that it will set a gold standard for how brand exposure can be measured," he said.