Time and Date

Steffen Thorsen, CEO and Founder, Jason Lydiate, Chief Revenue Officer

Stavanger, Norway
The Time and Date team. The Time and Date team working.
World clocks.
Humble beginnings as a hobby project

In 1995, as a student in university, Steffen Thorsen wanted to build a homepage about himself. At the time, he was experimenting with technology to make digital clocks, “I thought it was kind of cool to tell time all over the world so I made this service called a world clock, which showed time in about 100 different cities worldwide,” he says. Steffen tweaked the site over time, adding a calendar and other features. After graduation, he decided to move his hobby site off of university servers and in 1997 purchased the domain TimeAndDate.com and launched the site in 1998.

With some expenses to cover for the site now, Steffen learned from a friend about digital advertising and started placing ads on the site in 1999 to start earning some money. “Initially, I was able to start covering the cost of the site but was still working full-time,” he says. “But then I started making more money than my full-time job and I decided it was time to pursue Time and Date full-time.”

Woman looking at calendar.
Scaling their free resource while building a business

To this day, ad revenue is still the main source of income. “Ad revenue is the bread and butter of our business – it’s a crucial revenue source for us running a free resource,” says Steffen. “Most of the information we offer we wouldn’t be able to ask people to pay for.” Ad revenue also enables their team to keep their focus on what matters to their users. “We’re really able to focus on what’s useful for people without having to always chase after revenue,” says Jason Lydiate, the Chief Revenue Officer.

To serve ads on their site, the Time and Date team use Google Ad Manager. “We use other SSPs simultaneously with Ad Manager, which allows multiple ad networks to compete for our inventory through Open Bidding and Prebid, helping us maximize our earnings,” says Jason.

The Time and Date team has used those earnings to continue investing in building a great user experience and more tools for site visitors. “Today, we have 140 different tools on the site,” says Jason. “Including time converter, date calculator, holidays in different countries, sunrise and sunsets, and even eclipses.” Eclipses are something the team is particularly proud of. “We’ve actually worked with NASA a few times to share eclipse video feeds,” says Steffen.

“Ad revenue is the bread and butter of our business – it’s a crucial revenue source for us running a free resource.”
Giving back to their community

With a thriving business on their hands, Steffen and Jason have re-invested in their communities. “We sponsor local sports teams for kids and professionals,” says Steffen.

And they’re focused on continuing to build for the future. “We’re excited to modernize the design, improve existing services, and fill any gaps in our coverage,” says Steffen.

About the Publisher

Time and Date AS is based just outside Stavanger, Norway, where our teams work together to operate timeanddate.com, the world's top-ranking website for time and time zones. With free online services you can rely on, we make it easier to organize your life, both at work and at home.
Steffen Thorsen.