App Annie Scores $15 Million Series C From Sequoia & Others For Further Global Expansion

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Mobile app analytics and market intelligence service App Annie has long since established itself as a major player among app developers, publishers, enterprise customers, and even VCs digging in for due diligence ahead of mobile investments or reporters looking for app stats. Today, the company is announcing the fruits of its growing traction in the industry with a new raise of $15 million in Series C funding, in a round led by Sequoia Capital, with participation from existing investors IDG Capital Partners, Greycroft Partners, e.Ventures, and Infinity Venture Partners.

The funding also sees two new additions to App Annie’s board, including Sequoia Capital Partner Tim Lee, and Greycroft’s Alan Gould, CEO of uSamp, and founder of IAG Research, which sold to Nielsen.

This news comes on the heels of a significant upgrade to App Annie’s app intelligence service, which earlier this summer expanded to include daily estimates for downloads and revenues, in addition to the weekly and monthly data it previously offered, as well as a web version of the service which before had been decidedly old-school in the form of Excel and CSV raw data downloads.

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The updated product also squarely targeted the enterprise market by integrating with Tableau to power in-depth and customizable visualizations, and shipping with dozens of readymade templates.

Today, App Annie says it has over 90 percent of the Top 100 publishers by revenue using its products. Across the board, it’s tracking data on over 300,000 applications for over 125,000 developer customers, up from 250,000 apps just a few months prior. And it has over 45,000 customers using its analytics and intelligence products. To date, App Annie has analyzed over 25 billion downloads and more than $6 billion in app store revenues.

The company attributes its revenue growth to the business intelligence platform, noting that it has doubled its user base and tripled its revenue over the past year. While the company declined to provide specific numbers in terms of revenue or paid customer base, it does have a number of large customers who buy its data, including Tencent, Google, Microsoft, Baidu, EA, King.com, Shazam, GREE, Kayak, Ubisoft, Konami, Hearst, Dropbox, Activision, Big Fish, DeNA, Storm8, KakaoTalk and Glu. The average deal size for enterprise customers clocks in at around six figures, with a minimum subscription price of $15,000 per year.

The new funding is earmarked mainly for global expansion, as the San Francisco and Beijing-based company prepares to grow its footprint across Asia and Europe. Currently, App Annie employs over 110 people in San Francisco, Beijing, Hong Kong, London, Seoul, and Tokyo.

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Company communications lead Marcos Sanchez (speaking for CEO Bertrand Schmitt who was in route to Beijing), told us that although the company isn’t specifying its plans for head count growth in detail, “you can certainly expect that number to grow significantly while keeping an eye on fiscal responsibility,” courtesy of the new funding. “Our six offices internationally provide us with ample local coverage, and we see serious growth potential in each of these areas,” he adds. “This also gives us great eyes and ears to see what the new and emerging growth areas might be, whether that’s eastern Europe or Latin America.”

The funds will also be used to continue App Annie’s investment in its analytics platform, and specifically to grow its sales and marketing teams in San Francisco and elsewhere.

New board member Tim Lee called App Annie’s products a “must have” for anyone in the industry, explaining that he invested in the company because of its “seasoned management team, world-class product development center, and extremely loyal customer base.”

“Developers have voted with their feet, and 300,000 apps rely on App Annie Analytics every day,” Lee told TechCrunch. “The team’s laser focus on building the best product for developers is what has set them apart as the gold standard in app store market intelligence.”

App Annie chose Sequoia for the lead because of its abilities to provide strategic guidance on a range of issues, the company tells us, and with Tim Lee, App Annie appreciates his knowledge of mobile, aided by his investments in startups like Evernote and AdMob, while it moves into this rapid growth phase of its business. Gould, then, rounds out the board with expertise in market research and analytics.

The company competes with Distimo, appFigures and others, but sees significantly more traffic for its online products, at least in terms of visits and pageviews.

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The company’s growth and subsequent funding come at a time when the mobile app gold rush is showing no signs of slowing down. Apple’s App Store alone has grown from 225,000 apps in 2010 to now over 900,000 just a few years later. And this continues, despite the fact that breaking into the top charts is more difficult than ever and as mobile web technologies have grown by leaps and bounds during the same period.

Schmitt noted he could have actually raised a larger round, but App Annie’s revenue generation capabilities gave it the ability to raise less.