Ybrant Digital, a global digital marketing company, has raised $48 million in a fresh round through a combination of debt and equity, sources close to the development told VCCircle. Oak India Investments, an affiliate of Oak Investment Partners, participated in the new financing round joined by current investors Asia Pacific Capital as well as ICICI Bank. Sources added that the current round of funding also involves another unnamed investor. This is the fourth round of funding into the company.
Without divulging details on the valuation, Suresh Reddy, Chairman & Managing Director, Ybrant Digital, told VCCircle that there have been some secondary sales in the current round of funding but insititutional investors have not exited.
The exit involves some stake sales by a few angel investors, family and friends, Reddy added. The marketing and advertising solutions company has previously raised $25 million from Asia Pacific capital in 2008 and about $20 million from Sansar Capital Management in 2007 . While the portion of equity raised in the current round is not known, it takes the total amount of money raised from institutional investors to the tune of $100 million.
Ybrant Digital will use the funds to grow its reach, develop new technology, expand internationally and explore acquisitions.
Talking more about the expansion plans, Reddy, said, the resources will be spent in expanding into China, Russia and Brazil. The company has also hired senior level managers for this region. Reddy added that they are likely to announce a senior hire for their technology domain in a week or two.
Apart from expanding in these newer growth areas, Reddy added that they will also strengthen capabilities to expand their reach for mobile. They will use some portion of money for acquisitions. The digital marketing solutions company has had a strong bias towards inorganic expansion.
The company recently acquired Lycos – a leading Internet and Search portal, a US based subsidiary of Daum Communications of Korea, for $36 million in a stock deal. It also launched its local search platform ‘Ybrant Reach’ (‘YReach’) in India.
Last year, it acquired Max Interactive, Australian Ad Network (to get access to the APAC region), Argentina-based ad network Dream Ad (to gain access to Latin America) and Oridian, Seenetix and AdDynamix – global ad networks.
Ybrant Digital has closed six acquisitions since its inception in 1999, when it was founded as USAGreetings.com. In 2007, it acquired US based Ad network AdDynamix for $10 million and Israeli company Oridian for $13 million. A year before, Ybrant acquired Serbia-based VoloMP- an email marketing platform and US-based MediosOne. In 2009, Ybrant Digital acquired two companies – Dream Ad and Max Interactive. All of these operate as its subsidiaries now.
Without disclosing the revenue numbers of the privately held company, Reddy said that most of their revenues come from outside India. The company is confident that it will go public this year. Reddy refused to divulge details of how much they are looking to raise in a public offering.
The digital advertising industry has seen an unprecedented growth over the last ten years that has highlighted the domain’s strategic value and its growing importance in the global advertising market.
Ybrant Digital has offices in 16 countries including North America, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Mexico, UK, France, Germany, Serbia, Israel, India and Australia, and representatives in Scandinavia, Poland, Italy and Greece.
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