Seedtag, based in Madrid, has raised $40 million in a Series B funding round. Oakley Capital receives $35 million in this round, giving the investment firm a significant minority stake in the company. Seedtag offers a variety of contextual advertising solutions to brands by leveraging machine learning and AI technologies. The funds will be used to advance the company’s AI technology, target and onboard more publishers, and expand into the US market. With the impending shift toward consumer privacy and GDPR rules, the third-party cookie on which brands have relied for years is on its way out. Of course, this presents vendors with a new problem to solve: how to effectively target consumers without using their browser history.
Seedtag, which was founded in 2014, operates on a cookie-free ethos, instead relying on a proprietary machine-learning engine that can analyse 10,000 articles per minute and provide a human-like understanding. This analysis can then be used to gain a better understanding of consumer interests and, as a result, deliver more targeted advertising. Seedtag has established relationships with brands such as Universal and Adidas, agencies such as WPP and Havas, and premium publishers such as the FT, The Guardian, and Sky, reaching a combined audience of over 500 million unique users. Seedtag experienced significant growth in 2020 as a result of further product development and improvement. Even with the COVID-19 impact, the organization achieved organic year-on-year growth of 25%, reaching revenues of $50 million in 2020, with a further 60% growth forecast for 2021 ($80 million). The investment from Oakley is developed out of a long-standing relationship between Seedtag’s founding team, and the investment firms’ partners.
Following the Series B funding round, Oakley Capital managing partner Peter Dubens stated, “Oakley’s investment in Seedtag demonstrates our continuing ability to source proprietary deals from across our network and in attractive sectors.” Growing consumer privacy and brand safety concerns are driving growth in contextual advertising, and we believe Seedtag is well-positioned to capitalize on this exciting opportunity thanks to a combination of best-in-class technology, strong commercial relationships, and an impressive management team.”
Albert Nieto, co-CEO of Seedtag, said: “Oakley’s investment reinforces our strategy to create a worldwide leader in contextual advertising. We are looking forward to offering US brands and publishers our contextual solutions.” He further added “Oakley’s expertise in growth, technology, and media made them the best partner to boost Seedtag AI technology on a global scale. Together we are fully committed to offer best-in-class advertising in a privacy first world.”
About Seedtag Seedtag is the leading Contextual Advertising Company, developing highly impactful and engaging solutions for relevant premium visual content, enabling targeting and returns for top publishers and brands. Contextual A.I. from the company enables brands to engage with consumers within their universe of interest without using cookies. Seedtag was founded in 2014 in Madrid by two ex-Googlers who wanted to make the most of editorial images, and it is now a global company with over 250 employees and a significant international presence.