The MarTech Minute: ActiveCampaign, Frontify and Directly land more funding, Vectra Digital scoops up iPartnerMedia
The marketing technology week in review: A round up of news and announcements you may have missed.
MarTech Minute briefs always appear first in our daily newsletter throughout the week. Click here to subscribe. The following is our compilation of the past week’s briefs from those newsletters.
mParticle’s latest updates and new partners for Infutor and AudioGo
mParticle beefs up its data capabilities. mParticle has released a number of upgrades to its customer data platform, including access to “Calculated Attributes,” a feature that allows users to dynamically create user-level data based on existing data. “Data quality must be managed over time, and in fact, we have never seen a ‘set it and forget it’ strategy successfully executed over any meaningful timespan. If your data quality is not improving, it is degrading,” said mParticle CEO Michael Katz. This latest round of updates was designed to deliver better data quality, greater scalability across customer segments and more accurate CAC, LTV, churn and engagement metrics. “These updates will create better collaboration across teams and functions for true cross-channel personalization,” said mParticle Head of Product Craig Kelly.
Infutor and Vibes partner up. The consumer identity management solution Infutor entered into a partnership with the mobile marketing platform Vibes this month. Vibes’ customer data intelligence solution will be integrated into Infutor’s ID Max platform, giving users enhanced customer ID capabilities, more data attributes, such as home ownership, household income and marital status, and advanced analytics. “Infutor’s robust consumer identity data will help our customers add value to their consumer preferences and increase lifetime revenue. Tapping into the right data and segmentation that leans into consumers’ preferences, behavior, and brand sentiment is key to crafting a successful mobile marketing strategy,” said Vibes CTO Brian Garofola.
AudioGo ad platform announces two new partnerships. AdsWizz’s self-serve audio ad buying service AudioGo has partnered with Spanish-language media company AudioEngage and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. The AudioEngage deal opens up the platform to advertisers targeting Spanish-speaking audiences. The Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices partnership will give the real estate company’s 50,000 network agents and 1,400 franchises greater access to audio ads. “We have created sample scripts for our 50,000 network agents and brokerages across the U.S., who then can edit and customize them for their local market. AudioGO creates an audio ad, and the network agents decide when and where their ads run,” said Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices VP Wendy Durand.
ActiveCampaign raises $100 million. The customer experience automation platform ActiveCampaign has raised $100 million in Series B funding, led by Susquehanna Growth Equity (SGE), with help from Silversmith Capital Partners. The company says it plans to put this latest round of funding toward product innovation initiatives and international expansion. “ActiveCampaign and the CXA category have grown significantly and our investment in the Series B reconfirms Silversmith’s commitment to ActiveCampaign’s future,” said Silversmith Capital Partners Managing Partner Todd Maclean. The $100 million comes four years after ActiveCampaign raised $20 million in Series A funding from Silversmith Capital Partners. Since its last round of funding in 2016, ActiveCampaign has increased its annual recurring revenue to more than $90 million, opened three new offices and increased personnel from 65 employees to a staff of more than 550.
Frontify to put latest round of funding toward global expansion. The brand management platform Frontify raised $22.3 million in Series B funding. The investment will go toward the company’s expansion in North America and Europe, along with product innovation efforts. This latest round of funding was led by EQT Ventures with participation from existing investors Blossom Capital, Datartis Ventures and Thomas Dübendorfer, Tenderloin Ventures and Myke Näf. “With a rapidly growing worldwide customer base, we continue to see validation in our platform and the niche we’ve established in the market,” said CEO Roger Dudler. “We’ve been fortunate to work with some amazing investors thus far that really believe in what we’ve been creating.” Frontify currently boasts more than 2,500 users, including Facebook, Dyson and Vodafone.
Directly gets $20 million and a new CEO. Samsung NEXT, Samsung’s venture capital division, is investing $20 million in Directly, a platform designed to train chatbots, reports TechCrunch. The funding comes with help from six other VC firms, including Microsoft’s venture capital arm M12. In addition to a new round of funding, Directly also announced it is promoting its chief business officer, Mike de la Cruz, to CEO. “We are thrilled to have Mike at the helm of Directly. He has driven record-setting growth for the company in 2019, and we look forward to the impact he’s going to have into 2020 and beyond,” said Costanoa Ventures Partner Mark Selcow. The company’s co-founder and previous CEO, Antony Brydon, is moving into the role of head of platform. Before joining Directly, de la Cruz held executive roles at SAP and HP Enterprise.
Sprinklr opens operations in Mexico. Sprinklr, the once-upon-a-time social media management platform that now positions itself as a “unified front office for modern channels,” is opening operations in Mexico and Central America, as well as adding a Chicago office. The company has hired staff in Mexico City and started a strategic alliance with CX Team, a Mexico-based consulting firm. “Sprinklr’s local support, combined with their unified platform for customer experience management, supports our strategy. We can now engage students across social channels, learn from their conversations and use these insights to improve services that exceed our student’s needs,” said Tecnológico de Monterrey’s Social Media Strategy Manager Shel-Ha Bahena. Sprinklr says its new hires in Mexico will be focused on supporting the company’s hundreds of clients within the Mexico and Central America regions.
PathFactory brings 6sense ABM technology into its platform. The content intelligence platform PathFactory is partnering with the ABM orchestration solution 6sense, giving users more insight into account engagement and the content and topics that are impacting the customer journey. “With 6sense’s industry-leading account identification capabilities and PathFactory’s content consumption data, sales and marketing and teams can get deep insight into anonymous buying behavior of individuals and accounts, and deliver hyper-personalized content journeys,” said 6sense CEO Jason Zintak.The integration gives PathFactory access to 6sense’s account identification capabilities, connecting leads to their relevant accounts, as well as showing which content they’ve consumed and for how long.
Vectra Digital expands its clientbase with iPartnerMedia acquisition. The full-service marketing and web development agency Vectra Digital, which owns proprietary AI technology, announced it has acquired iPartner Media, Inc., a digital marketing and public relations firm. “The digital marketing space is surrounded by outdated services. We want to change that by incorporating innovative and cutting-edge technologies to marketing and sales,” said Vectra Digital CRO Felix Lluberes. “We have been watching Vectra since they came on the marketing landscape in 2017,” said said iPartner Media’s Founder Albert Arguelles who will remain as Vectra Digital’s president, “Being able to combine our expertise and the artificial intelligence technology that Vectra brings is going to result in efficiencies and value.”
New C-level officers join BDEX and Vision Critical
Tara Maitra has been appointed chief revenue officer for BDEX, a data exchange platform. In her new role, Maitra will lead the company’s revenue initiatives and oversee its business development and marketing efforts. “Tara’s deep expertise in data-driven marketing will serve as an invaluable asset to our growing company,” said CEO David Finkelstein, “We look forward to leveraging her skillset to communicate the unparalleled advantages BDEX’s Data as a Service (DaaS) tools bring to our clients.” Before joining BDEX, Maitra was the senior VP and general manager for TiVo’s content, ad sales and data divisions. She has also held senior roles at Comcast, NBC and PriMedia and was included in Cable Fax’s “Most Powerful Women in Cable Tech” list.
The cloud-based customer experience management platform Vision Critical has named Efrem Ainsley as its new chief operation officer. Ainsley will lead a number of business units, including human resources, finance, privacy and security and legal. “Efrem is a highly seasoned, respected leader and organizational guru with an impressive track record of growing technology businesses,” said CEO Ross Wainwright. Prior to joining Vision Critical, Ainsley was CEO for ScribbleLive, which was acquired by Rock Content. He has also served as the COO and CFO at Exinda and CFO for PlateSpin.
ConsumerAcquisition.com, a social ad services and solution provider for mobile apps and games, has recruited John Choi to serve as VP of user acquisition. Choi comes to ConsumerAcquisition.com from Zynga where he led the user acquisition team, overseeing popular games like Words With Friends and Zynga Poker. “John has extraordinarily deep experience in mobile game user acquisition driving profitable growth strategies for numerous app publishers, making him the ideal fit to lead our UA strategy,” said CEO Brian Bowman. Part of Choi’s responsibilities will include driving the company’s Facebook, Google and Apple user acquisition media buying strategy. ConsumerAcquisition.com reports it manages more than $3 billion in creative and social ad spend attached to the mobile gaming and app economy.