AdMeld Inc., a New York-based provider of online advertising optimization and integration, has raised around $7 million in Series A funding from Foundry Group and Spark Capital. It also has hired Michael Barrett as CEO. Barrett previously was with Fox Interactive Media as executive VP and chief revenue officer.
AdMeld, a technology company focused on online advertising optimization and integration, has launched an advanced technology platform for publishers to maximize revenue from digital ad networks and ad exchanges. The AdMeld platform, which is emerging from an eight-month beta program, leverages dynamic pricing, advanced targeting, and industry best practices to effectively route inventory from publishers to generate the highest revenue for each ad served.
To lead the next stage of growth, AdMeld has brought in as Chief Executive Officer online advertising veteran Michael Barrett who was most recently Executive Vice President, Chief Revenue Officer for Fox Interactive Media. Mr. Barrett has previously held senior level positions at AOL, Yahoo, Disney Online and more over his 25-year career.
“One of the biggest challenges that online publishers continue to face is how to effectively monetize discretionary inventory,” Mr. Barrett says. “AdMeld combines optimization for higher revenue with strong accountability and ease of use via a single platform. Both publishers and ad networks wind up making more money while spending significantly less time and resources. It’s a very powerful solution.”
“As the process of selling and serving online inventory becomes increasingly complex, publishers need the tools to maximize revenue and see exactly what’s happening with their impressions,” says Benjamin Barokas, co-founder and Chief Revenue Officer of AdMeld, who has over 10 years in online operations experience with JumpTV and AOL. “AdMeld removes complications when dealing with multiple networks and exchanges. No longer do publishers have to deal with disparate tags, interfaces, and conflicting statistics. Our platform increases yield while reducing the resources needed to pull reports, evaluate data, and re-prioritize campaigns in a traditional ad server.”
Unlike the other network optimization companies, AdMeld built a complete technology platform from the ground up. “We took a hard look at existing offerings and it was clear that in order to make the killer product we would need to start from scratch,” says Brian Adams, co-founder and Chief Technical Officer of AdMeld. “We built the product we always wanted as publishers and a lot of the gains we’ve realized for customers come from features unique to AdMeld.”
AdMeld found quick support in the investment community. “Today’s digital publishers must achieve the highest possible ROI for their undervalued inventory. Only through powerful automated optimization and management tools can publishers see the higher incremental revenue while keeping operational overhead low,” says Santo Politi, a founder and General Partner of Spark Capital which, along with Foundry Group, is a primary investor in AdMeld.
Since May 2006, Mr. Barrett has been Executive Vice President, Chief Revenue Officer for Fox Interactive Media where he oversaw the worldwide revenue for all Fox Interactive Media properties, which include MySpace, IGN, FoxSports.com, Fox.com, AmericanIdol.com and Scout.com.
Prior to joining Fox, Mr. Barrett served as Executive Vice President for Sales and Partnerships at AOL Media Networks, where he was responsible for all branded advertising sales. Before joining AOL, Mr. Barrett was Senior Vice President for Sales and Business Development at GeoCities, which was sold to Yahoo! Inc.
Mr. Barrett also worked for Disney Online where he oversaw all national ad sales and marketing. Prior to joining Disney, he held senior positions with Meredith Publishing, Newsweek Magazine and Family PC Magazine.
Spark Capital (www.sparkcapital.com) is a venture fund based in Boston, Massachusetts. Its investment focus is on the conflux of the media, entertainment and technology industries. Over the last decade, they have been instrumental in the development of new markets and market leaders. Akamai Technologies, CSTV, K12, Qtera, Aether System, Broadbus, thePlatform, Redstone, and Novatel Wireless are just a few of the companies backed by the Spark team that includes former executives of major entertainment, media, and technology companies such as Sony, Time Warner, Blockbuster, Lion’s Gate, Apple, and Microsoft.
The Foundry Group (www.foundrygroup.com) Foundry Group is a venture capital firm focused on investing in early-stage information technology, Internet and software startups. In addition to providing the necessary venture capital to get a company up and running, Foundry Group is committed to leveraging its experience in starting and growing companies, its expertise in the technology industry, and its network of relationships to help great entrepreneurs turn great ideas into great companies. Foundry Group is based in Boulder, Colorado, and invests in companies located across the United States.
AdMeld (www.AdMeld.com) is an online advertising technology company that helps publishers maximize revenue. Its technology platform utilizes dynamic pricing, advanced targeting and system integration to connect publishers, networks and exchanges. The New York-based, privately-held company was founded in 2007 by Benjamin Barokas and Brian Adams, who have broad experience in advertising operations and software development. AdMeld’s major investors include Spark Capital and the Foundry Group.