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VideoAmp Raises $70 Million in Funding Led by Raine Group to Boost Cross-Platform Video Metrics Push

Media exec Peter Liguori joins board of ad-optimization company

VideoAmp, a company focused on optimizing cross-platform advertising, has raised $70 million in new funding led by investment bank the Raine Group.

The funding brings total funding to about $106.6 million. Raine Group invested $50 million in the round with venture-capital firm Ankona Capital contributing $20 million. Previous VideoAmp investors include Mediaocean and RTL Group.

VideoAmp said it will use the new capital to build out its enterprise sales and data science teams. The company currently has about 150 employees and plans to expand headcount by one-third — to 200 staff — by early 2020, according to chief strategy officer Jay Prasad. In addition, “we’ll continue to be opportunistic with acquisitions,” he said, noting VideoAmp’s deal last year to buy IronGrid, a TV data processing startup.

In conjunction with the funding, media executive Peter Liguori, former CEO of Tribune Media and head of FX and Fox Entertainment, will join the company’s board and will serve as a senior adviser. (Liguori is not an investor in VideoAmp.) Erik Hodge, managing director and head of the Raine Group’s L.A. office, also will join the board.

“The current media environment has created an ever increasing appetite among marketers and media owners for innovative video data and measurement solutions,” Raine Group’s Hodge said in a statement. “Of the emerging companies in the space, VideoAmp stands out for its product and technology team – led by an extremely talented and dedicated entrepreneur, Ross McCray.”

VideoAmp’s customers and partners — encompassing global advertising holding firms, agencies, and media companies — include WPP’s GroupM, Omnicom, CBS, A+E Networks, AMC Networks and Tubi.

The L.A.-based company claims that it optimizes over $10 billion a year of marketing spend. VideoAmp provides a view into advertising performance across TV and digital video platforms, using proprietary software that recommends optimal return on investment. Its system matches a marketer’s first-party sales data with ad-impression data from multiple pay-TV providers, smart TV makers, OTT services, mobile apps, and content providers.

“By optimizing marketing investment to sales versus eyeballs, everyone wins,” Ross McCray, co-founder and CEO of VideoAmp, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to complete this round of financing and to have the Raine Group and Ankona Capital as partners, which will allow us to rapidly expand our footprint as the leading independent platform that the industry needs right now.”

Founded in 2014, the company doesn’t disclose financials but claims its revenue has grown over eightfold over the past two years. Currently, VideoAmp isn’t profitable on a P&L basis. “We’ve had months where we had EBITDA positive results but we’re going back to invest heavily in people,” Prasad said.

Prasad said the new funding will help strengthen its position as an independent company in the advertising ecosystem, one that can bring together the buy side, sell side and data side together without any conflicts of interest. “Media giants are creating walled gardens with their advertising marketplaces,” he said. “If you are a brand, you want to participate in a marketplace efficiently.”

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