Dataseat – a London-based tech startup, helping mobile app advertisers to manage programmatic media buying in-house – has launched with its first seed round of funding of £1.75m through PlayVentures, Backed.vc and SAATCHiNVEST. The impressive funding syndicate also includes angel investors, ex Criteo, Eric Eichmann (CEO) and Jonathan Wolf (CPO).
The new startup, which has been operating in beta for twelve months, helps mobile-first global brands gain effective control and transparency of their programmatic media by licensing the Dataseat demand side platform (DSP) directly to advertisers. Dataseat also includes unique built-in analytics software, providing a true view of the advertiser’s current campaigns, including analysis and insights into incrementality testing, attribution accuracy and fraud.
With particular success with mobile gaming companies, Dataseat clients, which have been trialling the software, include Social Point – the Barcelona-based creators of the popular mobile titles Dragon City and Monster Legends and Los Angeles-based Jam City developers of Panda Pop and Disney’s Frozen Adventures. Dataseat also works with M&C Saatchi Performance whose clients include Audible (an Amazon company), Zappos and ZipCar.
Henric Suuronen, Founding Partner at Play Ventures – a premium early stage VC fund investing in global gaming and gaming services startups – said, “We believe that democratising ad-buying is a massive opportunity, and that Dataseat is the best team to deliver this game-changer in performance marketing. Play Ventures could not be more excited to support their vision of giving everyone access to a powerful, transparent and independent DSP.”
Alexandre Noirot-Cosson, Product Marketer at gaming developers Social Point added, “The benefits of in-housing are control and transparency and the integrity of our user data. The challenge of in-housing is to realise the benefits whilst maintaining performance and scale to make the investment worthwhile. Our experience to date with Dataseat is that they are getting this balance right.”
Alex Dunson, Partner, at SAATCHiNVEST said, “David is a true visionary and we are excited at how he uniquely enables clients to take back control of their adspend. The ad tech world will look very different in a decade as it weeds out the bots and the pickpocketers, and David will be the leading light.”
Alex Brunicki, founding partner, Backed.VC said, “The trend towards in-house programmatic media buying for app developers is clear and Dataseat has the strongest product and long-term vision we have come across in the space. And as founder-market-fit goes, one couldn’t find a stronger founding pair than David and Paul. At Backed, we are very excited to be supporting the team at Dataseat.”
Eric Eichmann, Angel Investor (Ex-Criteo CEO) said, “Having worked with David and Paul at Criteo after acquiring their previous business, I’ve seen their ability to build teams and products that add real value to their addressable market. The team, plus the growing trend toward advertisers in-housing, made this a ‘no brainer’ investment for me.”
David Philippson, co-founder and CEO of Dataseat said, “Fraud has had a massive negative impact on our industry, as fraudsters thrive in environments where there is little transparency and multiple middle men. By in-housing, advertisers change the way they buy; to CPM as opposed to CPI (cost per install), which removes the incentive for bad actors.
“We use machine learning and AI within programmatic to build custom bidding algorithms for advertisers that are transparent, avoid misuse of data, and increase scale and performance. These benefits help advertisers to build the business case to in-house their media buying. ” Philippson concluded.
Dataseat is co-founded by industry veterans and serial entrepreneurs David Philippson (CEO) and Dr Paul Hayton (CTO). Previously they launched the first mobile measurement and attribution Company Ad-X Tracking which was sold to Criteo in 2013. Their combined experience in building attribution systems, which are frequently targeted by fraudsters, and building an In-App media business at Criteo drove David and Paul to develop Dataseat as a much needed alternative to App Advertisers.