Retargeting Specialist AdRoll Buys YC Alum Userfox To Add Email And CRM Data To Its Net

AdRoll, a online ad retargeting specialist that works with the likes of Facebook, Twitter, Google and more, is expanding the number of sources where it collects data for its platform, and potentially inventory for where ads can run. Today the company announced its acquisition of userfox, a specialist in email marketing. Userfox originally started life in 2011 as a Y Combinator video voicemail startup called Vimessa before it pivoted to launch under a new name. The terms of the deal were not disclosed but we’re trying to find out.

The company is due to make an official announcement about the acquisition later today. In any case, it’s a mark of how AdRoll, as it grows, continues to try to diversify to offer more functionality to its customers. Last year, the company acquired Bitdeli, which focuses on helping users create their own dashboards and visualisations for things like marketing campaigns.

“Userfox stood out to us because they share AdRoll’s vision of making complex marketing technology perform for a broad market,” said Aaron Bell, AdRoll CEO, in a statement. “AdRoll is dedicated to creating products that drive ROI for marketers and userfox will be a critical addition as we continue to grow this year.”

Retargeting technology lets sites and brands display ads to users who have already visited sites that contain either that brand or a particular product — the aim being increasing the chances a user will return to the original site and convert from being a mere visitor into a paying user.

AdRoll notes that the userfox deal will give it more more datasources for that platform. Userfox will let advertisers on AdRoll’s platform (there are about 10,000 today) collect and parse data from CRM databases, email lists and other sources like mobile IDs. Userfox co-founder Peter Clark is joining AdRoll to head up the new division.

But there is potentially another area where Userfox may come in handy: Userfox says that its email retention service currently sends more than 2 million emails every month for thousands of customers. This potentially becomes a ripe area into which AdRoll can expand its inventory.

“Like AdRoll, we created userfox to bring marketing technology typically reserved for Fortune 100 businesses to companies of all sizes and we have always been relentless about raising the bar for simple yet effective products,” said Peter Clark, userfox CEO and co-founder, in a statement.

AdRoll to date has raised some $19 million to date from Peter Thiel, Max Levchin, Accel and others.

Photo: Flickr