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ipsh!, Omnicom Group’s mobile agency, blends underground art, cell phones, and commerce with launch of mStore for START SOMA Gallery


San Francisco – Dec. 13, 2005 – ipsh!, the U.S. mobile phone marketing leader, today announced its new mStore for START SOMA, a San Francisco art gallery for emerging visual artists. Powered by ipsh!, START MOBILE will be the first gallery to sell new art for cell phones, transforming the devices into pocket galleries.

The ipsh! mStore is a mobile storefront that enables companies to display, promote and sell any type of mobile content, including wallpapers, ringtones, mobile videos, games, and now art. According to The Gartner Group, more than 800 million phones will be sold in 2005, so the market for new mobile applications, services and accessories like mStore and START MOBILE offers huge potential for companies and organizations using this technology to expand their business.

“With thousands of original works by hundreds of artists, we required a decidedly robust and powerful platform to power our mobile gallery, which is why we chose ipsh!,” said John Doffing, founder of START SOMA. “We’re excited to bring new art to the most popular consumer technology device used today - the not-so-humble cell phone. Without ipsh! there was no way to ensure the level of quality we required to effectively showcase the amazing range of artwork available via START MOBILE, and we are absolutely honored to be the first mStore.”

ipsh! mStore is built on the firm’s proprietary PRISM platform and includes connectivity to all supported North American carriers. Mobile content is automatically optimized to the customer handset and is billed through the carrier. The product is available either as a complete customer-facing solution, providing Web and WAP full-service, storefront experiences, or as a back-end service/interface for existing Web or WAP sites. More than 100,000 images are currently for sale in the START MOBILE mStore.

“To ipsh!, this is more than mobile commerce, this is the convergence of the artistic flavor of San Francisco’s South of Market culture and new mediums of display, in this case the phone screen,” said Nihal Mehta, CEO of ipsh! “We first worked with START SOMA in 2003, using SMS messaging to promote its art openings, and are excited about this new venture into selling mobile art.”
All art showcased on START MOBILE is optimized for display on more than 200 handsets from national carriers. Users will be able to buy art for their phones using premium SMS, billed directly to their phone bill.

For more information about ipsh! mStore, email or visit


About ipsh!

ipsh! is the North American leader in innovating, developing and deploying effective, turnkey mobile marketing solutions, with over 400 successful campaigns since the company’s inception in June 2001. Spanning technologies that encompass 1-way and 2-way SMS, alerts, promotions, ringtones, logos, pictures, wallpaper, screensavers, games, real-time voting/polling, chat, interactive TV, IVR (interactive voice response), premium SMS, MMS, and mobile video, ipsh! has dominated the media, entertainment and brand verticals with its proprietary PRISM platform. ipsh! is a wholly owned subsidiary of Omnicom Group Inc. For more information, visit

Omnicom Group Inc (NYSE: OMC; is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom’s branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, strategic media planning, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries.


START SOMA is an upstart art gallery in San Francisco with a unique focus on original work by emerging artists. Founded by technology entrepreneur John Doffing in March 2003 as an antidote to the pretense + inaccessibility of the typical “wine and cheese” art show, START SOMA provides an iconoclastic common ground for emerging artists and new collectors. Since its inception, START SOMA has featured the work of hundreds of emerging artists from around the world, and has showcased several thousand original works of art — from painting, sculpture, and photography to interactive installations, video art, and new media pieces. Most recently, START SOMA created the acclaimed Painted Rooms series of art shows in San Francisco’s Hotel Des Arts.

START MOBILE is the logical extension of the START SOMA vision that “art should be for everyone.”

Media Contacts:

See below for ipsh!

John Doffing | START SOMA


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