Lakehead University Alumni Magazine

An Ad Man for a Digital Age

Grant le Riche (Ba'06)

Tracey Skehan
Published February 06, 2014

Grant le Riche (Ba'06) was born and raised in Toronto and the city's frenetic pace suits his high-energy personality.

This Torontonian has been shaped by his passions for advertising and athletics. as a teenager he reveled in snowboarding, windsurfing, hockey, and running. He was also a counselor at Camp Kandalore – a wilderness summer camp for kids.

group photo outside in winter with snowboards
Grant le Riche (far left) and some friends snowboarding in Kicking Horse, British Columbia

While still in high school, le Riche was introduced to high-powered ad agency owner Rick Padulo, the CEO of Padulo Integrated and a Canadian Marketing Hall of Legends inductee. "Rick offered to take me on a tour of his offices and spent time introducing me to his staff, while educating me about advertising," le Riche says.

He was hooked. Le Riche enrolled in Sheridan College's Marketing program in 2000. After completing his diploma, le Riche decided to do a Bachelor of Arts in English at Lakehead.

It offered him much more than an excellent education. "The outdoors experience was such a great balance to my academics. I enjoyed playing pond hockey, sledding, hiking, camping, ultimate frisbee, and pretty much every other intramural sport offered on campus."

When he graduated in 2006, he plunged into an advertising career without looking back. The lure of being part of an emerging field attracted him to online marketing. "I landed at a company called Rydium, which had me working in New York, Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco."

His whirlwind tour of the United States continued with a stint at the Los Angeles-based company Evolve Media before returning to Canada in 2008 to establish the Toronto division of VideoEgg, a small start-up headquartered in San Francisco. "VideoEgg was an extremely innovative company that morphed into SAY Media which is one of the top content publishers in the world."

In early 2012, le Riche was ready for his next challenge. He was hired as managing director, Canada, of TubeMogul – an integrated real-time media buying company with a twist.

TubeMogul logo

TubeMogul, which is based in California, focuses on video advertising and promises "to deliver video to any audience, in any format, on any device. Advertisers only pay when someone chooses to watch their video and they see exactly which sites their ads ran on, how their ads performed, and who watched them."

According to TubeMogul, over 96% of video ad campaigns purchased by its customers are self-serve. As le Riche explained in a recent DX3 Digest interview: "Clients are starting to understand that they can take technology into their own hands and save themselves half their budget."

Grant le Riche's willingness to try unconventional routes has met with fantastic success.

"TubeMogul started with me working out of a Starbucks before quickly turning into a 2,800 sq. ft. office at Adelaide St. W and Spadina. We closed out the 2013 fiscal year with over $100 million in revenue."

In keeping with his credo of "never slow down," le Riche continues to be an avid snowboarder and is planning boarding trips to Europe and Asia in 2014.

He also points out that he's hiring for multiple roles in Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver and would love to see more Lakehead grads. "To this day I hold my Lakehead experience near and dear to my heart. GO Thunderwolves!"


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