Clearspring Technologies, Inc. said Tuesday it closed a $20 million Series D round of funding led by Institutional Venture Partners. The McLean, Virg., company, which owns the content tracking service AddThis for social media content, said existing investors joined the round. Its existing investors include New Enterprise Associates, Novak Biddle Venture Partners, former AOL President Ted Leonsis, AOL founder Steve Case, Capital One co-founder Nigel Morris and Silicon Valley super-angel Ron Conway.
Clearspring Closes $20M Series D Led by IVP to Continue Growth Around Big Social Data
Provider of AddThis Sharing Platform Triples Revenue; Reaches More than 1B Unique Users Monthly Across 9M Sites
McLean, Va. – May 10, 2011 – Clearspring Technologies, Inc., provider of the largest social content sharing platform AddThis, announced today that it has closed a $20M series D round of funding led by Institutional Venture Partners (IVP), alongside Clearspring’s existing investors. IVP, one of the premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firms, has funded some of the fastest-growing, data-driven online companies including Twitter and Zynga. This investment comes amid a period of continued, significant growth for Clearspring as a company, as a platform and as a provider of real-time interest data on Internet audiences. The funding will be used to accelerate Clearspring’s next-generation publisher products and continued growth of its advertising offerings, as well as to help fuel strategic acquisitions.
The AddThis sharing tool, with its widely recognized orange box with white plus sign icon, is a familiar sight on more than 9M websites globally enabling users to share content easily with their friends through more than 300 different social networks in 70 languages. Armed with collective insight into what over 1B unique Internet users choose to read and share monthly through AddThis, Clearspring enables advertisers to reach the right audiences at the right time via ad exchanges and demand-side platforms.
IVP has a track record of backing truly significant digital companies that stand out as the best of breed in their respective market. “Clearspring processes 10TB of data per day. This as much data per week as the entire digital Library of Congress has stored online,” said Sandy Miller, General Partner at IVP. “This massive data set, coupled with their scalable and differentiated real-time data processing capabilities, puts Clearspring in a unique position to not only take advantage of the rising demand for audience data in advertising, but also enables them to disrupt a number of other markets. We’re excited about the investment and the growing opportunities associated with big data online.”
The AddThis platform has grown from reaching 200M users in 2008 to being one of the ten largest audiences online today. AddThis is also one of twenty web tools world-wide with a Google Page Rank of 10. With revenue on track to triple this year, the company is hiring a new employee almost every week, which will result in it almost doubling its staff this year.“We’ve had a singular focus on making it easy for publishers to drive traffic to their sites via social sharing, while providing best-of-breed analytics to help them optimize their sites to capitalize on that traffic. As a result of our focus, we’ve built a massive reach.” remarked, Hooman Radfar, co-founder and CEO of Clearspring. “With this investment, we can now bring the power of that reach back to the individual publisher via our next generation tools and services, which will focus on providing publishers actionable data, not just from the social web, but the entire web. Imagine the challenges we can help a publisher solve- -it’s a staggering opportunity.”
IVP joins Clearspring’s impressive roster of investors including New Enterprise Associates, Novak Biddle Venture Partners, former AOL vice chair and president Ted Leonsis, AOL founder Steve Case, Capital One co-founder Nigel Morris, and Silicon Valley super-angel Ron Conway.
“We’ve always held the view that big data would be one of the most valuable assets to come out of the social web,” said Ted Leonsis, Clearspring’s Chairman, as well as founder, CEO and majority owner of Monumental Sports and Entertainment and owner of the Washington Capitals, Wizards, Mystics and Verizon Center. “It is no surprise to anyone close to the company that we have parlayed our expertise in social sharing to achieve a reach surpassing Yahoo!. In the last year, we’ve started to leverage that reach via our Audience Platform. But we’ve just started to scratch the surface. With this investment, we’ll see just how far we can go.”
About Clearspring Technologies
Clearspring is the leader in connecting publishers, services and advertisers to audiences on the social web. Clearspring’s AddThis platform enables leading publishers to distribute and track digital content such as web pages, widgets, and videos to social networks, bookmarking sites, blogs, and more. AddThis is used by over 9 million unique domains reaching over 1 billion unique users monthly. Clearspring’s Audience Platform leverages aggregate data from AddThis to allow advertisers and publishers to reach these audiences by influence, interest and intent in real-time. Visit www.clearspring.com to learn more.
About Institutional Venture Partners (IVP)
With $3 billion of committed capital, Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) is one of the premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firms in the United States. The partnership is currently investing IVP XIII, a $750 million later-stage fund focused on investments in rapidly growing media and technology companies. Founded in 1980, IVP has invested in over 300 companies, 86 of which have gone public. IVP has a 30 year IRR of 43.2% and is one of the top performing firms in the industry. IVP specializes in venture growth investments, industry rollups, founder liquidity transactions and select public market investments. Since its inception, IVP investments include such notable companies as ArcSight (HPQ), Aspect Communications, At Road (TRMB), Business.com (DEXO), Clarify (DOX), ComScore (SCOR), Concur Technologies (CNQR), Danger (MSFT), Digital River (DRIV), Foundry Networks (BRCD), HomeAway, Juniper Networks (JNPR), Kayak, LivingSocial, LSI Corporation (LSI), Mobile 365 (SAP), MySQL (ORCL), Netflix (NFLX), Polycom (PLCM), Quigo (TWX), Seagate (STX), Synchronoss (SNCR), Tivo (TIVO), Twitter, Websense (WBSN) and Zynga. For more information, visit http://www.ivp.com or follow IVP on Twitter: http://twitter.com/ivp.