Mobile Ad Network InMobi Turns Profitable, Eyes Expansion In U.S.

In August, we covered mobile ad network InMobi, which was been performing very well in the Asia and Africa and beginning to expand to Europe. My colleague Robin Wauters wrote that while InMobi was seeing success in some global markets, traction in Europe is key for the ad network to really take off. Four months later, InMobi is now profitable and seeing a fair amount of growth in Europe and South America.

Asia, where the ad network had a stronghold, currently employs the highest number of ad impressions for InMobi, with 4,950 million ads each month. In Africa, InMobi delivers 900 million impressions per month. But the rapid growth for InMobi has been concentrated in South America, where ad impressions have grown by 1306% in the last six months, and Europe, where InMobi has delivered 850 million impressions per month. InMobi also reports that it has delivered 7.5 billion monthly mobile advertising requests globally.

Based on our understanding of their eCPMS, growth and past monthly revenue, it looks like InMobi is now generating $1.6 million in monthly revenues and could be on pace for a $20 million annual revenue run rate. And InMobi is eyeing the U.S. market for additional expansion. The company’s mobile advertising service, which is targeted more to the mobile web than applications, is currently available in 30 countries, cites advertisers like Reebok, Yamaha, and Cricket Nirvana and recently signed on several new global publishers including Ebuddy, hi5, and Friendster.

For InMobi’s profitability and considerable growth, the startup has raised relatively little money compared to some of its competitors. The company raised a total of $7.6 million to date, starting out with a $500k seed round from a group of angel investors and followed up by a multi-million financing round led by Kleiner Perkins, Caufield & Byers and Sherpalo Ventures (the VC firm started by Ram Shriram, early backer and founding board member of Google).

Of course the big elephant in the room is Google’s recent acquisition of AdMob and how that will effect InMobi’s continued expansion into the U.S. market. And there’s the possibility that Google could make a move to overtake InMobi’s stronghold in other countries.