InfoSum Ltd. has raised a $65 million Series B funding round, as the data technology startup aims to support companies’ growing need for customer-data services that adhere to stricter privacy rules.
Prior to the investment, the company was valued at $300 million, up from a $100 million valuation ahead of its most recent funding round in 2020, the company said.
The funding, entirely from U.K.-based investment firm
, will enable the company to increase its head count and global presence as it plans for an initial public offering in the next five years, said InfoSum Chief Executive Officer and Chairman
InfoSum, which has dual headquarters in Basingstoke, U.K., and New York, sees an opportunity to boost growth as companies rely on new techniques for collecting data amid tighter privacy regulations and a rise in digital media consumption and e-commerce, Mr. Lesser said.
“The ambition of the company is to build this out as a large independent platform for data collaboration and ultimately take this company public,” he said. “We obviously need our Series B to get there.”
InfoSum generated between $4 million and $5 million in revenue in 2020, and expects to more than triple its revenue in 2021, said Mr. Lesser, who became CEO last year.
InfoSum’s technology enables clients to match online and offline data sets without actually moving the data outside their companies, and to use the information to target advertisements to customers or inform other business efforts such as content or product development.
For example, one customer may have data representing financial household income and another showing car-buying preferences. InfoSum creates new, anonymized versions of the companies’ data sets so they can see where there are people with overlapping characteristics without transferring any data. In this case, that may mean people who make over $100,000 and may also be interested in buying a Lexus.
Businesses have become more sophisticated in how they collect and use data and technology, but growing privacy concerns have led to new rules and regulations in Europe and in U.S. states including California.
also are planning or already implementing changes that limit the use of data in ad targeting, prompting marketers to rely more on the customer data they own rather than using data from third parties, as well as techniques such as data-matching to send digital ads to prospective consumers.
“This is a sea change in how companies are thinking about relationships to customers and the way they use data,” Mr. Lesser said. “Governments will continue to take an interest in this. I do think this wave is building and ultimately will crest.”
Other companies that promise to help companies understand consumers in ways that protect their privacy also have been raising money. Iris.TV Inc., whose tools help marketers and others understand video content for the purposes of ad targeting and measurement, this spring raised $18 million from Intel Capital and others.
And GumGum Inc., an advertising technology company that provides tools to analyze and place ads based on the content nearby, raised $75 million in new funding from Goldman Sachs Growth.
Founded a little more than five years ago, InfoSum spent its first few years focused on product development and began selling its products in 2019, said Mr. Lesser. In the past year, the company added 50 new customers, including
Walt Disney Co.
Omnicom Group Inc.,
where Mr. Lesser most recently served as CEO of ad unit Xandr, also a client and investor in InfoSum, which has raised about $90 million to date.
The company will use its latest investment to hire more engineers and sales and customer-relations and operations employees, as well as to expand in new regions abroad, Mr. Lesser said. The company employs about 100 staffers.
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