- GumGum has announced that it has raised $22 million in funding from existing investors Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital, NewView Capital, and Upfront Ventures
GumGum has announced that it has raised $22 million in funding from existing investors Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital, NewView Capital, and Upfront Ventures. This round of funding will be used for an aggressive acquisition strategy. And GumGum CEO Phil Schraeder told TechCrunch that the core business of the company has been profitable for years.
“We have historically not done M&A or acquisitions — those are going to be part of what we do going forward,” said Schraeder via TechCrunch. “We have built an amazing, strong, profitable balance sheet and team and presence in-market that we want to accelerate and grow.”
Schraeder has been working at GumGum for almost 10 years. Initially, he started out as the VP of finance. Then he was promoted to CFO and then president. When GumGum co-founder Ophir Tanz stepped down to launch Pearl, Schraeder became CEO.
GumGum has developed computer vision technology for identifying the content within an image. And then the content is used for displaying contextual ads. In the future, GumGum plans to expand into sports sponsorships and in-video ads. The in-video ad platform is currently being tested with Sprint and a number of other brands.
GumGum also launched Verity for Publishers, which is a tool that uses natural language processing and computer vision to analyze the content of a page to ensure that it’s brand-safe and relevant for advertisers.
Schraeder also noted that its forms of contextual ads will become important for advertisers as cookies become less useful for tracking consumers.
“For the industry, this is what’s going to help us — better user experiences leveraging the context on the page, integrated advertising that brings back the positive view of advertising,” added Schraeder via TechCrunch.
GumGum also revealed that it has appointed Lisa Licht to its board of directors. Licht was formerly CMO of Live Nation Entertainment and now runs a consultancy.
“As I see it, this is the ideal time to get behind GumGum,” explained Licht. “They have outpaced the market in terms of growth year-after-year, maintained profitability and now there’s an obvious inflection point at hand for contextual advertising in digital. That’s an area where GumGum already has a significant edge, so I’m looking forward to helping expand its lead in that area, while also contributing to success across the full breadth of GumGum’s business.”