MediaMath received $73.5 million in Series C funding, led by Spring Lake Equity Partners, bringing its total to $175 million.
The ad tech company will devote the funds to honing its flagship TerminalOne Marketing Operating System product and for global expansion into EMEA, APAC and LATAM markets.
This infusion is MediaMath’s first round of funding since 2011, when it netted $14 million. Company CEO Joe Zawadzki said the company didn’t need any funding for the immediate years following its Series B. Things have changed.
“It got to the point where the opportunities were in front of us from a global growth perspective in terms of investing in overseas markets, in terms of putting folks on site and even engineering resources in international markets to help clients build on top of the platform and help suppliers build into it,” Zawadzki said. These factors, he added, led MediaMath to seek greater investment.
Zawadzki also hinted that there would be further acquisition activity (its most recent ones include Akamai ADS and Tactads) as MediaMath improves its stack, saying there is “a lot to be done” to position MediaMath as a leading marketing and ad tech provider.
“Having capital will let us acquire both teams and products and businesses critical to the vision,” he said. “Now was the time to raise capital to go after these opportunities more aggressively.” He declined to specify exactly what these opportunities are.
MediaMath's aggressive expansion, both internationally and technologically, isn’t surprising considering the company’s moves this year. In January, co-founder Erich Wasserman became the company’s first global CRO, expanding his oversight beyond APAC and EMEA regions. At the time Wasserman told AdExchanger MediaMath's billings in those regions accounted for nearly half of its global revenue.
MediaMath has also been stationing staff in Latin America, including a country manager in São Paulo. He added that the scaling of programmatic in international markets tends to move faster than it did in the US and the UK.
“They have a bit of a Cliff's Notes to see best practices, what does work and what doesn’t work,” he explained. “We want to be there for clients as they look to implement their business road map and strategy, help local customizations – like integrating with key local suppliers or dominant technology vendors – or help people reengineer their stacks. You do have to be there. You can’t dial it in.”
On the technological front, MediaMath has boosted its capabilities around its TerminalOne product, a bundle of tools that includes a DMP, ad server, learning algorithms and an API layer. MediaMath bought Tactads in March so it could use the latter’s technology to enhance TerminalOne’s cross-device matching capabilities. (MediaMath still anticipates this integration will be completed in Q3 2014.)
MediaMath intends to further develop its technologies. While Zawadzki wouldn’t say what development specifically he’s prioritizing, he mentioned greater support for its API layer so suppliers and partners can customize their TerminalOne product more easily – allowing them, for instance, to build out their own user interfaces or manage information from data exchanges as they see fit.
Despite the volatility of the ad tech market, investment groups are pouring in the dollars. Others that happened this year include retargeting company AdRoll getting $70 million, data-management platform (DMP) Lotame snagging $15 million, supply-side platform provider (SSP) PubMatic raising $13 million and DMP/demand-side platform provider Turn raising a cool $80 million.
More is likely coming. Last Friday, The Wall Street Journal reported that Alibaba, among others, was in talks to invest around $100 million into AppNexus, possibly bringing the ad tech firm beyond the $1 billion valuation mark.
It’s unclear at what valuation this latest infusion puts MediaMath.