Adludio (F-K-A Future Ad Labs)
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Future Ad Labs is a multi-award winning company which develops and distributes a range of innovative, modern ad units designed for the mobile generation.
We believe that our ad units have provided unprecedented per-unit revenue for our current publishers and have delivered consistently against brand KPIs. In addition to this, our data shows a better user experience when compared to available alternatives. We believe that advertising is moving towards intelligent targeting of users on hand held devices, the exact environment our ad units were designed for.
While our products are platform agnostic, the power of our ad units are best demonstrated on touch-screen devices as recent campaigns have shown that this is where a growing number of our traffic originates from.
Since raising our first round of funding on Seedrs nearly two years ago, we have come a very long way. We began life as Digital Spin, and then merged with Future Ad Labs, after which we received a $1 million investment from venture capital firms as well as other industry angel investors in 2013. Passion Capital led the investment round and other investors included Balderton Capital and Ballpark Ventures.
WHY ARE WE USING A CONVERTIBLE?
We are using this convertible round as a form of bridging finance before undertaking a venture capital fundraising round in the near future. This is an instrument used to defer the need to set a formal valuation on the company and help generate momentum behind our new products which will ultimately place us in a good position to raise our Series A round.
WHEN WILL YOU RECEIVE YOUR SHARES?
If you invest in this convertible, you will receive shares in Future Ad Labs at either (i) the time of our next fundraising round (at a 15% discount to the price paid by such future investors), or (ii) on a longstop date of one year from the date of the convertible, in the event that we do not close a fundraising round within such time.
Try out the PlayCaptcha below by dragging the finger across the KitKat:
PlayCaptcha, PlayRoll and PlayUnlock improve online visitor experience across devices and generate an incremental new revenue stream for website owners and guarantee brand engagement. In addition to ensuring that 100% of users are fully engaged, we also use a large and complex number of data points to gather and analyse big data in order to provide brands with the ability to precisely target their consumers.
Substantial accomplishments to date
- Apr 2013: By this date we had raised a total of £620k, of which £60k came from the Seedrs platform and £50k came from angel investors
- Aug 2013: First publisher signed (ITV)
- Sep 2013: First brands launched (Heinz & Reckitt Benckiser)
- May 2014: Served 5m PlayCaptchas
- May 2014: The size of our network has grown to 23m engagements/opportunities p/m
- Jun 2014: We have signed 7 Publishers & 9 Brands since launch
- Jun 2014: New product launch - PlayRoll which has been integrated on Muzu
- BBC Good Food, ITV Breakfast & STV: ABC1, female, aged 30 to 54
- Northern & Shell:
* Express: male and female, aged 55+
* Star: C1C2 male, average age 42
* OK!, New! & Star – female, aged 15 to 24
- Autotrader: predominantly male, aged 18 to 64
- Muzu: music lovers and entertainment seekers aged 18 to 24
- Reckitt Benckiser - Cillit Bang, Finish, Vanish
- Unilever - Persil
- P&G - Febreeze
- April 2013: Festival of Media ‘Hot Company of the Year Global 2013 & Asia 2013’ (winner)
- September 2013: ad:tech ‘The Next Big Thing’ (runner up)
- May 2014: MOMA ‘Best User Experience' (winner)
- June 2014: The Europas ‘Best Adtech Startup’ (shortlisted)
- Over 91% of those exposed felt that PlayCaptcha was better than the reCaptcha experience.
- Up to 94% brand recognition and 94% product recognition after being exposed to PlayCaptcha.
- 75% of respondents found that the brand was trying to be helpful.
Website publishers looking to monetise visitors to their sites will gain an incremental new revenue stream through branded PlayCaptchas, PlayRoll and PlayUnlock. We have now established a fixed pricing model with our publishers. This fixed cost base enables us to enter into trading agreements with producers to drive both volume and growth.
Advertisers will pay for each completed engagement and this revenue will be split between Future Ad Labs and the publishers. We sell to brands on a Cost per Engagement (CPE) basis as a pure media spend. We are therefore able to charge a premium because advertisers are paying for engagements rather than impressions. The data we collect enables us to demonstrate improved levels of captcha completion and our panel research demonstrates high levels of user satisfaction and engagement with the brand. This further enables us to charge a premium over other forms of user engagement formats.
Try the PlayCaptcha below:
Use of proceeds
The amount raised will be applied to head count and marketing to:
1. Close current opportunities
2. Launch new products
3. Develop PlayUnlock
4. Drive Market liquidity
5. Position for Series A
Try the PlayCaptcha below:
Advertisers wanting to increase brand engagement rates: in the increasing cluttered world of online advertising, our ad formats guarantee that 96.7% of served PlayCaptcha will be successfully completed versus roughly 70% of reCAPTCHA and indeed very low levels of engagement with standard banner ads. This solves the problem of low engagement rates, and banner blindness, experienced by many advertisers without wasting a single penny of ad spend.
Website publishers looking to monetise visits to their sites: website owners benefit from our ad formats as they generate an incremental new revenue stream. They also keep users happy by enjoying a fun and improved brand experience as apposed to the frustrating CAPTCHA, boring pre-roll adverts and payment for content unlock.
Characteristics of target market
CAPTCHAs are everywhere. There are more than 200 million reCAPTCHA completions every day worldwide. Future Ad Labs already has the capacity to deliver up to 5 million PlayCaptchas a month. We can backup the assertion that PlayCaptcha is a less frustrating experience for the website visitor than reCAPTCHA with survey results showing over 91% think PlayCaptcha is better than reCAPTCHA.
Online video watching is increasingly becoming part of our daily life. On YouTube alone there are collectively more than 6 billion hours of videos watched per month. Visitors are becoming increasingly frustrated with pre-roll videos, which have a massive 94% early leave rate.
Content Unlock is a young market idea but the possible applications are truly vast. Any webpage could have a PlayUnlock branded engagement to ensure publishers are generating income per user visit.
Through the launch of PlayCaptcha, Future Ad Labs has developed strong ties to its six major media publishers and nine brands.
Our go to market strategy is focused around four key areas:
1) Direct sales team: Our direct sales team is headed by our SVP Sales (ex Sequoia & Index Ventures backed 'Stardoll Media') who leads our four person sales team. This sales team sells directly to brands, media agencies and publishers.
2) Publisher sales teams: Our premium publishers are leveraging their own in house sales teams to sell our products. ITV is the first publisher to do this, with their extensive sales team selling PlayCaptcha. Our new products will enable us to unlock more inventory across a number of audiences.
3) PlayEngine: One of our core developments is the PlayEngine, a self serve tool that will allow media agencies, creative agencies and publishers to sell and build PlayCaptchas for their clients.
4) Market liquidity: Based upon the excellent performance of our PlayCaptcha product to date, we are confident that we can unlock all available volume offered by our existing publishers resulting in higher market penetration and consequent profitability.
We currently have more demand than we can action and therefore require further sales resource in order to develop additional brand contacts and agency relationships. We also would like to invest in a marketing resource to maintain market profile and on-going communication both to prospects and customers designed to develop supply and demand.
These sales activities will be supported by a marketing strategy that includes:
Public Relations: Future Ad Labs has been featured in numerous publications in multiple countries to date, including Forbes, TechCrunch Marketing Week, Marketing Magazine, Campaign, and The Drum
Thought Leadership: Regular thought leadership speaking engagements e.g. London Technology week, Brand innovation days etc, as well as our own events called 'Future Ad Insights'.
Showcasing and Awards: We have won a number of prestigious industry awards that showcase our work, including: 'Hot Company of the Year' at Festival of Media, 'Best User Experience' at MOMA and shortlisted for 'Best European Ad Tech' at the Europas.
Although the concepts of PlayCaptcha, PlayRoll and PlayUnlock are new and not on the market Future Ad Labs does have some similar competitors, for example Solve Media, and "Are You a Human?"
Solve Media offers branded CAPTCHAs and pre-roll type-ins, however neither are games and they require keyboard interaction leading to a poor user experience on mobile devices. However they do have a large number of blue chip brands as clients and have raised over $10m since their launch in 2009.
Another PlayCaptcha competitor is "Are You A Human?" who use games as CAPTCHAs. However the games are not branded nor advertising based as far as we are aware. They have raised at least $3.4m since launching in 2011.
We believe our products are better than both these solutions – games as CAPTCHAs and as an alternative to pre-roll and advertising. Securing high quality inventory is the key to being the most effective player in the market; we will therefore be using funds raised to hire a Business Development resource to develop our publisher network and audience base, offering greater value to our brands.