Brand Networks, which is backed by AEA Investments, has acquired Optimal for $35 million. Garros Group advised Optimal in the transaction. Headquartered in San Francisco, Optimal is is a Saas platform for audience analytics and ad buying for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Its investors include Neu Venture Capital, The Social Internet Fund, Siemer Ventures and Signal Ventures.
BOSTON, MA–(Marketwired – Oct 16, 2013) – Brand Networks, a leading provider of integrated social software solutions and digital marketing services, has acquired Optimal, Inc., a SaaS platform for real-time ad buying and optimization and analytics for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The $35 million acquisition expands Brand Networks’ social advertising capabilities, creating the most comprehensive platform available globally for brands and agencies to manage advertising, publishing, application development, and analytics.
Since 2008, Optimal has been a leading advertising technology pioneer, optimizing over 100 billion social ad impressions and working with leading brands such as Gucci, Sephora, JustFab and Gilt Groupe. Optimal is currently the only company globally that is a LinkedIn Sponsored Updates partner, is live with the Twitter Ads API, and is a Facebook Exchange-qualified Preferred Marketing Developer.
Optimal received the Grand Prize in the recent Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer Innovation Competition for their Open Signals product. Open Signals lets advertisers link data APIs and feeds to their Facebook advertising campaigns. Data sources could include retailer inventory data, in-store foot traffic, weather conditions, coupon redemptions; even synchronizing social ads when an advertiser’s television ads are running. Advertisers can use Open Signal’s data sources or their own internal data to trigger their ads in real-time, and ultimately tie Facebook ad spend to their own real revenue metrics.
“I’m incredibly excited to partner with Rob and to welcome the Optimal team to Brand Networks,” said Jamie Tedford, founder and CEO of Brand Networks. “The industry is moving towards consolidation of social marketing and advertising spend and deeper integration with fewer trusted partners that have achieved scale. The combination of Brand Networks and Optimal delivers this for our clients and the platforms we serve.”
Brand Networks is experiencing a year of rapid growth, recently announcing $68 million in financing from AEA Investors, a leading global private equity firm with more than $6 billion of assets under management. They also joined an elite group of LinkedIn Certified Developer Partners and most recently joined the Google+ Pages API program.
“My team and I are all thrilled to be joining forces with Brand Networks. We share a customer-centric and innovation-driven culture and vision, focused on delivering deeply integrated solutions to the world’s leading brands and agencies. Brand Networks has built a powerful stack of data-driven social tools, and Optimal has been recognized as the best self-service ads platform in our space. We recently achieved profitability, and look forward to continuing our strong growth both domestically and internationally,” said Rob Leathern, founder and CEO of Optimal.
Leathern will become the Chief Product Officer for Brand Networks, and lead product innovation for the company. The Optimal self-service ads and analytics platform and managed service offerings will continue to be supported by Optimal, a Brand Networks company. Rob will also lead integration of Optimal’s products and services with Brand Networks’ Social Marketing Stack™. Optimal’s San Francisco headquarters will serve as the hub of Brand Networks’ West coast operations. Optimal’s New York-based team will join Brand Networks’ NYC office in Soho.
About Brand Networks
Brand Networks is a leading provider of integrated social software solutions and digital marketing services for the world’s most liked brands. Brand Networks delivers enterprise-ready social applications with its Social Marketing Stack™, which harnesses the integrated power of social networks to generate stories at scale, build brand loyalty and foster more profitable customer relationships. As a Facebook Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer, Brand Networks is one of a small number of companies to be awarded all four PMD badges: Ads, Pages, Apps and Insights. Brand Networks is also a LinkedIn Certified Developer Partner, selected for delivering engaging experiences on the LinkedIn platform. Brand Networks is headquartered in Boston, MA, with offices in Los Angeles, New York City, Rochester, and Toronto. For more information, please visit www.brandnetworksinc.com.
About Optimal, Inc.
Optimal is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform for real-time integrated audience analytics and ad buying for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Optimal is currently the only company globally that is a LinkedIn Sponsored Updates partner, is live with the Twitter Ads API, and is a Facebook Exchange-qualified Preferred Marketing Developer. Optimal is headquartered in San Francisco, CA, with offices in Palo Alto, New York, London, and Chicago. Visit http://optim.al to learn more.
Garros Group acted as an advisor to Optimal, Inc. in connection with this transaction.