European Video Ad Platform Teads Raises Further $30M As It Eyes Up Future IPO

Video advertising platform Teads, which specialises in those now familiar video ads that reside outside of video content — such as placed in an article between two paragraphs of text — has raised a further £20 million (~$30m) in funding as it continues to talk up a potential IPO.

The new financing is an even split between equity-based investment and debt: £10 million is being invested by existing investors Gimv, Partech and Elaia, and new investor BPI, while the remaining £10 million comes via a ‘mid-term’ line of credit from various banks, including Bank of China, HSBC, BNPP and BPI.

Teads says it will use the new capital to invest in its video ad technology and to speed up growth, with a particular focus on the U.S. in addition to new markets, including Brazil, Russia, South Korea and Japan.

The result of a recent merger of two European video adtech companies — Teads and Ebuzzing — the Paris-headquartered company’s pitch to publishers is that its innovative video ‘Supply Side Platform’ enables more lucrative video ads to reach parts that traditional pre-roll video ads don’t.

Specifically, unlike video ads that appear before, after or laid over video content, Teads-powered video ads can sit anywhere on a web page, such as placed between passages of text, within slideshows or inserted into news feeds. This means that publishers don’t need to produce video content to get in on the video ad action.

Also, crucially, the video ad only plays when it is visible to the user, a concept the company calls ‘view-to-play’, which goes someway to solving the so-called visibility problem of online ads and enables Teads to guarantee that each video advert served is actually viewable by users on screen.

To that end, Teads claims to be currently working with major publishers in over 40 countries. These include The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Washington Post, Reuters, Forbes, TF1, Le Monde, Le Figaro, Les Echos, ABC, La Stampa, Axel Springer, Conde Nast, Nikkei, and O Globo.

Meanwhile, the company has 350 employees across 25 offices worldwide and says it achieved an estimated revenue of close to £63.5 million in 2014, an increase of 65 per cent on 2013 (£38.6 million). It’s also planning to increase head-count by 180 in 2015 to support growth globally.