Since its launch in late 2009, Facebook’s Preferred Marketing Developer (PMD) program has grown from a dozen companies to hundreds around the world. It has helped brands, agencies and startups build applications, manage pages and run billions of dollars worth of advertising spend on the platform. Early PMDs like Buddy Media, Vitrue and Wildfire sold to Salesforce, Oracle and Google, and many of the original European PMDs that my old team at Facebook helped nurture have become global companies.
As Facebook and other social platforms, like Twitter and Pinterest, have evolved, so have the ecosystem of partners around them. The leading PMDs now help clients to intelligently merge their own data with Facebook’s and Twitter’s to enable better targeting and more relevant engagement. We believe in the opportunity that the continued growth of monetization on these platforms represents. Social ad platforms help deepen the capabilities of the Facebook and Twitter advertising platforms by enabling A/B testing at scale, merging proprietary and social data sets and delivering greater ROI to their clients (and therefore more revenue for Facebook and Twitter).
Over the past several months we have spoken to dozens of these social advertising technology companies on both sides of the Atlantic. We were looking for a company that had significant revenue traction today, that understood the value of leveraging data across various social networks to provide value for its clients, and that had the product vision to see where the potential lay in the future.
Today we are delighted to announce that White Star Capital is investing alongside Notion Capital in a $7 million Series A round of funding for Glow Digital Media.
Glow has quickly scaled out to be one of the leading social advertising platforms globally. It services clients in Europe, North America and Asia from its London HQ, an office in New York and its recently opened Asian hub in Singapore.
The company has already delivered significant results for clients including King, Spotify, US Bank, and American Express and it is set up to support large brands and agencies as well as fast-growing mobile and e-commerce companies. It saw revenue grow by over 500% in the last year alone.
Glow is one of only 14 Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer (SPMD) partners for Facebook and was recently selected as one of Twitter’s new Marketing Platform Partners. This close relationship with two major social platforms allows Glow to provide superior services to its clients, such as the ability to identify and target potential users across social platforms using a single data model and tool.
Damian, Glow’s founder and CEO, clearly understands the power of the marriage between corporate proprietary data and social signals to identify, engage and retain customers across social platforms. It is this vision that has allowed Glow to service some of the largest advertisers on social platforms and that, we believe, will allow Glow to continue innovating as the world of social advertising continues to evolve.
I am excited to be joining Glow’s board. It is a group with deep operational experience and highly complementary skills. I have insights from my own experience internationalizing Facebook’s presence and building out its Platform. Florian from Project A Ventures brings expertise in e-commerce and business intelligence from his time as MD of Rocket Internet. Ian from Notion Capital served as VP at MessageLabs, a European B2B startup that had a $700 million exit. We believe this accumulated experience will benefit Glow as it continues scale internationally and continues to service its customers better.