Freshly Funded Integrate, steered by Skier and NFL Vet, Storms NYC

3/21/12Follow @arleneweintraub

Ad technology startup Integrate, which offers a platform that helps advertisers manage campaigns across both on- and offline venues, announced today that it has raised $11 million in a Series B funding round. Comcast Ventures and Liberty Global led the round, with participation from Integrate’s original investor, Foundry Group. Integrate, which is headquartered in Denver, has also set up new offices in New York City. “All of the big ad agencies are here and we believe our technology will greatly help them advance their businesses,” says co-founder Jeremy Bloom, who opened the New York office a month ago and staffed it with five people. “We needed to be here to have those conversations.” Integrate has recently expanded its sales efforts to San Francisco by opening an office there, as well, Bloom says.

Bloom’s name may sound familiar to sports fans. That’s because prior to his recent career as an Internet entrepreneur, he was successful in not just one, but two sports. Bloom was a three-time world champion in freestyle moguls skiing who represented the U.S. at the Olympics in Salt Lake City (2002) and Turin (2006). Plus he was an All American football player at the University of Colorado, after which he played professionally for the Philadelphia Eagles and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Believe it or not, he tried to hide all that when he launched Integrate in April 2010 and went out to talk to venture capitalists. “These guys were meeting really impressive entrepreneurs from MIT and other places,” Bloom says. “I just didn’t think my experience in sports screamed ‘entrepreneurship.’”

Those venture capitalists must have seen something worth backing in Integrate’s plan. Just eight months after the company was founded, it raised a $4.25 million Series A from Foundry. The company used the funding to build its technology, which is designed to automate advertising for brands across multiple channels—from traditional outlets like television or radio to online outlets like Facebook. Once advertisers are approved to join Integrate’s marketplace, they can upload their creative to the site and use it to map out their campaigns. Customers can also use Integrate’s platform to measure the performance of the ads they place across all the channels they choose to use.

Integrate takes a five- to 30-percent cut of the fees advertisers pay to publishers, Bloom says, and the company’s revenues have grown 800 percent since its Series A. The platform has attracted 1,500 advertisers and 2,000 publishers, including well-known brands like Microsoft and Yahoo, Bloom says. The site is designed to be simple enough for customers to use without training or assistance, though some do pay Integrate to manage the process for them.

Bloom and co-founder Hart Cunningham hatched the idea for Integrate at their last startup, MDInfo, a site where people can pose health questions to doctors and other medical experts. “We wanted to monetize the site by helping pharmaceutical companies recruit patients for clinical trials,” Bloom says. “It was incredibly challenging—we needed a ton … Next Page »

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  • Turk182

    Help me understand why anyone would want to pay a 30% premium to use an ad management platform. And if they did, all the margin they would realize from running advertisements would be eaten in fees. There is also the challenge that the intergrate.com platform sells advertising and leads-putting the user’s interests in jeopardy. Google has a platform and doesn’t compete directly, but integrate does. All the data that funnels through the platform is owned by integrate.com and there is opportunity they are monetizing it.

    Also, most companies including Microsoft have their own proprietary technology, so its unlikely larger organizations are getting value. Direct clients are not looking for third party traffic, and are focused on services rather than marketing, so again- this is not a well thought-out plan. More likely this is a way to fuel management’s fun in the sun lifestyle.

  • Tmac

    Hart is riding Jeremy Bloom’s coattails, and has never been able to do anything meaningful on his own. Integrate.com should suffer the same fate as his other failed ventures: Juvio.com, perfspot.com, janist, redmoss media, classicmodeling, allleads.com, shvon corp, and of course funnymoney.com