Serial entrepreneur and gWallet founder Gurbaksh Chahal sold his ad network BlueLithium to Yahoo for $300 million in 2007. At the time, Chahal’s company was the fifth largest ad network in the United States and the second largest in the United Kingdom. Chahal’s non-compete contract with Yahoo just ended last week, and he’s getting back into the online ad business. Today, he’s launching RadiumOne, an online ad network that aims to combine social and intent data to serve ads.
RadiumOne mines social data and use this information to identify relevant consumers for brands. Through what Chahal calls “social retargeting,” RadiumOne analyzes how users interact with one another on social networks to find the consumers that identify with a brand’s current customer base, and then serves advertisements to this audience.
Of course, RadiumOne gets this data directly from social networks (although not from Facebook), which sell anonymous user behavior data to advertisers, its own gWallet offer platform, blogging platforms, microblogging platforms (i.e. Twitter), URL shorteners, photosharing websites and other applications.
As social media users share information like links, blog posts, videos and more, RadiumOne will analyze this data to place the consumers on a social graph that will accurately describe their “behavior.” RadiumOne will also take the social data and form “social clusters” of people who know each other and share common interests. RadiumOne will target these new groups based on their interactions.
RadiumOne says that its targeting methods will improve ad conversion rates by up to 5x based on various tests it has done. And the company promised advertisers that its publisher network exists of only of comScore Top 500 sites.
Chahal says that RadiumOne will become the parent corporation to offers platform gWallet. Although gWallet is profitable, Chahal adds that he is considering raising a $50 million funding round, which would be used for acquisitions.
While Chahal certainly has the experience on his side, the online ad space is very competitive. It should be interesting to see if RadiumOne has the legs to compete in the display ad world.