Why I joined Cuebiq

I’m excited to share the news that I have joined Cuebiq.  Well – I’ve actually been involved with the company for some time, beginning early last year.  I was first introduced to Cuebiq through the Angel Round Capital Fund, (thanks Jeff) in which I’ve been a Limited Partner since 2011.  The fund is a co-op of angel investors of sorts with the primary vision of investing in New York Metropolitan area early stage technology companies with strong growth potential.  As a member of the fund, you have the opportunity to invest additional capital alongside the fund, giving early stage companies the opportunity to raise significant capital.  As an active member, I also participated on the evaluation committee, selecting the best companies from those seen to move on to present to the general membership for investment.  I’ve probably seen and heard close to 500 hundred pitches over the last 6 years. While the fund has invested in some exciting companies — including Kansas (acquired by AOL), UpNext (acquired by Amazon), Human Demand (acquired by Ignition One), YieldMo, Cirrus Data, Crowded and more — I had yet to do an incremental investment.  That is until now (Cuebiq) and I wasn’t the only one.

So, what made Cuebiq so different?

There have been three fail safe principles that have guided my success over the years. They are: 1. Does the company operate in a large and growing market? 2. Is the product market leading or have the potential to be? 3. people – Will I be surrounded by smart, innovative thinkers? Well, Cuebiq nailed all three in spades!

Market Opportunity

If you’ve been following my posts and columns on ClickZ you already know, I’m pretty passionate about mobile data and marketing technology.  For me, the mobile opportunity offers marketers the ability to bridge online and offline behaviors to better understand and impact the customer journey in powerful new ways.  Mobile signals and real-time insights including location and dwell time are redefining how marketers engage and communicate with prospects and the market opportunity is huge. In fact, according to the IAB, mobile advertising climbed to $20.7 billion in 2015 (up 66% over the year prior) and is the fastest growing segment in digital advertising.  Additionally, Markets and Markets recently estimated the location analytics market is expected to grow from $8.20 billion in 2016 to $16.34 billion by 2021.  That’s a CAGR of 17.6% during the forecast period. Cuebiq’s unique mobile location data and analytics platform fuels both mobile and display advertising spend and the growing thirst for location analytics.

A huge and rapidly growing market opportunity – Check

Product

I’ve been fortunate enough to meet with dozens of mobile companies over the past 4 years as both an investor and someone who lead mobile M&A efforts as Group Vice President at Oracle and SVP of Emerging Channels at Responsys prior to its acquisition.  This unique perspective has given me the opportunity to recognize enormous potential and Cuebiq has it.  So, what does Cuebiq do?  Cuebiq offers three main solutions.

  1. Geo-Behaviors audiences for cross-platform ad targeting.  Using its proprietary point of interest database and location and dwell time collected from GPS, WiFi and Beacon signals, Cuebiq has more than 1,200 segments tied to and mobile ad ID and their corresponding cookies.
  2. Real-Time Campaign Reporting. The ability to track, manage and optimize display and mobile campaigns including performance, walk to rates, cost per visit and more.
  3. Audience Analytics & Footfall Attribution. The ability to recognize offline behavior including store visits and lift as well as deep audience and location analytics including visits, dwell time, brand affinities and more.

Reporting and analytics are available via a SaaS based platform or real-time feeds.  To do this, Cuebiq persistently tracks location proximity signals that are collected directly from 1 in 4 smartphones in the US or more than 55 million active monthly users from over 160 app partners.  Because Cuebiq’s SDK is installed in apps where location is critical to the app’s value proposition, Cuebiq’s persistent background location capabilities captures more than 150 data points per user, per day making it without question the largest, most accurate location data provider in the industry – bigger and more accurate than any other panel-based or bid stream provider in the market.  Furthermore, Cuebiq’s advanced SaaS platform is among the most impressive I’ve seen in decades and their dedication to privacy is admirable.  In fact, Cuebiq is a member of the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI), the industry’s leading self-regulatory association dedicated to responsible data collection and its use for digital advertising, and received its privacy seal of approval in 2016.  However, it doesn’t end there, the company is investing in IOT, predictive decisioning, AI, machine learning and more and the application and use of the data seems almost endless.  New channels and applications across transportation, smart city planning, retail and banking site planning, research and more are emerging and provide the company with a compelling roadmap for massive growth for many years to come.

Market Leading, Highly Differentiated Product with Massive Growth Opportunities- Check

People

Let’s face it – we spend the majority of our waking lives at work.  Surrounding yourself with smart, passionate, motivated co-workers who also like to have a little fun along the way is essential.  At Cuebiq the passion is palpable. Started in Milan, Italy by Antonio Tomarchio (DMN’s 40 under 40), Filippo Privitera (Data Scientist Extraordinaire), Walter Ferrara (Engineering & Security Savant) and William Nespoli (Product & Data Guru), this market leader in mobile data and analytics has the intensity that rivals many of the great companies I’ve been fortunate enough to work at in the past.  But the talent doesn’t end there — we’ve been fortunate enough to attract an “A” list of investors and advisors including top executives from LiveRamp, AddThis, Microsoft, Oracle and more. I’m very excited to be working with these talented folks and of course our impressive board including our newly appointed Chairman, Rick Belluzzo, the former Microsoft President and COO.  It’s an environment filled with team work, innovation and passion that’s only distraction is a quick break for an afternoon espresso.

Passionate People, Dedicated to Innovation & Excellence – Check

Needless to say, I’m more excited than I’ve been in years and I can’t wait to share more about our growth and expansion in the months and years ahead.

‘Til next time.

Michael

Michael Della Penna

Chief Revenue & Growth Officer, Cuebiq