Mobile Ad Network Jumptap Raises $27.5 Million, Looks Ahead to IPO

Photograph by Pulse/Corbis

Chief Executive Officer George Bell refocused Jumptap on targeted mobile advertising instead of mobile search products.

Jumptap, a mobile advertising network that competes with Google and Millennial Media, said today it raised $27.5 million, which will be used to improve its products and technology ahead of an initial public offering.

It’s the seventh round of funding for the 7-year-old company, which has raised a total of $121.5 million, according to Jumptap. The latest round included previous investors General Catalyst Partners, Redpoint Ventures, Summerhill Venture Partners, Valhalla Partners and WPP, as well as new investor Keating Capital.

It’s been nearly two years since Chief Executive Officer George Bell joined Jumptap and started refocusing the company on targeted mobile advertising, instead of mobile search products. Out of a staff of about 80, he cut half and then aggressively hired. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company now has about 150 employees. Revenues last year grew 60 percent, according to Bell.

The company has partnered with data providers to categorize audiences by characteristics such as demographics, location and behavior, Bell said. The company continues to test and refine new technology, he said.

“It’s a little like a very long-term experiment that you just have to keep trying things and keep the faith that you’re going to get some grapefruit,” he said in an interview last month. “I’ll joke with our venture capitalists that what they gave us was a research grant.”

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