LONDON – S4M, an international AdTech MarTech company specializing in drive-to-store campaigns, announced that it has raised $12M USD in a Series B round from Sofiouest with participation from existing investors Bpifrance and Entrepreneur Venture. The company launched their platform, FUSIO by S4M, in February this year, in SaaS and will now accelerate their technology developments with an ambitious focus on proprietary real-time features to measure traffic and sales into stores. This funding is part of Bpifrance’s Investments for the Future Programme (Programme d’investissement d’Avenir) from its dedicated Digital Ambitions Fund (Fonds Ambition Numérique).
S4M’s proprietary technology was created towards the end of 2011 by Christophe Collet, after his first start-up Adenyo, was sold to Motricity in a US$100M deal. Today, the French start-up has expanded into an international group with eight offices worldwide and 160 employees. The company works with global brands including Renault, L’Oréal, Pernod Ricard, Subway, and Levi’s, as well as leading global media agencies. Each year, S4M delivers more than 5000 campaigns to demonstrate digital advertising efficiency for its clients by measuring real-world store visits following online exposure.
E-commerce remains a critical channel for brands and retailers to generate sales. However, 90% of worldwide consumer transactions are still taking place in physical points of sales. Traditional media channels like radio, out-of-home, and print advertising is estimated at $365 Billion USD* this year, combined with digital ad spending worldwide, valued at $266 Billion USD*. Despite the continued growth in both channels, attribution models to evaluate true returns on media investments are lagging behind. FUSIO by S4M, the company’s technology platform, aims to bridge online and offline investments by delivering real-world metrics attributed from digital advertising campaigns. The platform displays foot traffic into stores in real-time, hence enabling data-driven online optimization to maximize the overall campaign performance.
FUSIO by S4M is the advertising platform with the most independent 3rd-party measurement integrations in the market. “Our store visit metrics are delivered by various partners to ensure that we are not judge and jury on our campaign results and effectiveness,” explains Christophe Collet, CEO of S4M. “Clearly the industry is shifting paradigms in terms of attributing media ROIs and this new funding will allow us to be at the forefront of this disruption.”
In addition to displaying incremental store visits in the platform as a direct result from online impressions, the company recently launched Dynamic Catchment Areas (DCA). This is a unique feature to power drive-to-store campaigns by geotargeting users based on their brand affinity and travel distance into store on foot or by car. This Series B funding will continue to fuel technology development with a focus on expanding the platform’s AI-based features and growing sales in the United States. Ultimately, S4M has set their sights on going beyond store visits to eventually measuring and displaying consumer purchases in stores directly in the platform in real-time.
“Technologies that can attribute and optimize digital campaigns based on real world measures, such as store visits, mark a major shift for the advertising industry. Brands and advertisers can be more confident that their digital investments align with their ultimate business objective – generating more sales. Financial investment in this space, to improve accuracy and quality, will be welcomed by the advertising community,” says Tom Cijffers Chief Client Officer, USA at MediaCom.
S4M is projecting a revenue target of US$100 million by 2020. “Digital innovation is at the heart of our investment strategy,” explains Patrice Hutin, CEO of Sofiouest. “Drive-to-store solutions define the future of retail and we are confident that S4M and its technology, FUSIO, will be a worldwide game changer in the industry.” Existing investors, Bpifrance and Entrepreneur Venture adds “We are excited to continue our support for S4M, this time in partnership with Sofiouest. In these past years, S4M’s management has proven their ability to achieve both their technical and commercial roadmaps together with an international expansion.”
*Worldwide Ad Spending Report eMarketer Forecast, September 2017
S4M – Shopper Marketing Made Easy – is the first and only mobile advertising technology that connects brands to consumers by bridging the gap between digital advertising and the real-world. S4M created a mobile-first technology that is unique in the industry to be accredited by the MRC (Media Rating Council) on the entire mobile user journey. The platform empowers brands with full transparency and control in their mobile data supply chain from mobile programmatic buying to consumer conversion in apps, mobile sites, and physical points of sales.
Founded in 2011 by mobile marketing pioneers, S4M is headquartered in Paris with over 160 employees and services more than 500 advertisers worldwide. The company has ten offices in the US, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Latin America. Discover more: http://www.s4m.io.
Sofiouest is an investment fund and holding group specialising in “mature stage start-ups”, companies with a proven commercially successful product aiming for additional market expansions. Since 2016, Sofiouest has invested in 6 companies: Klaxoon (collaborative business solutions), Oxatis (e-commerce SaaS solution), Inbox (data marketing software), Lengow (e-commerce feed management), Sellsy (consumer lifecycle management software), and S4M (digital mobile advertising platform). Sofiouest also have stakes in two investment funds, West Web Valley, seed fund managed by Arkéa Capital, and Ring Capital. Finally Sofiouest also invests in real estate corporations with Groupe Mazureau.
About Entrepreneur Venture
Created in 2000, Entrepreneur Venture is a an independently managed entity a part of the French Financial Markets Authority (AMF) and the AIMF, specialising in unlisted shares that are owned and managed by founders. Entrepreneur Venture manages 3 retail venture capital funds (FCPI), 5 retail private equity investment funds (FCPR), and 28 investment funds, the total capital valued at €600M. Entrepreneur Venture is a leading player in equity and bond financing for SMEs and has executed more than 140 investment transactions. For more information: http://www.
About Bpifrance’s Digital Ambitions Fund (Fonds Ambition Numérique)
The Digital Ambitions Fund (Fond Ambition Numérique) is an investment fund dedicated for start-ups in the digital sector, launched by the French State as a part of the PIA (Programme d’Investissements d’Avenir – Investments for the Future Programme) and backed by the “Caisse de Dépôts” and managed by Bpifrance, a public investment bank. This fund co-invests in start-ups with strong growth potential, developing new technologies, uses and service for the digital economy. For more information: http://bpifrance.fr & Twitter @Bpifrance @BpifrancePresse
About Programme d’Investissements d’Avenir (PIA) – Investments for the Future Programme
The PIA has been endowed with a budget of €57 Bn from the French State and piloted by the CGI (Commissariat Général a Investissement) to finance promising and innovative initiatives in the country. The PIA has six national priorities to boost the potential and employment growth in the following sectors:
• Higher education & training
• Research & its flow into the economy
• Sustainable development
• Industries & SMEs
• Digital economy
• Health & biotechnologies
The Caisse des Dépôts Groupe is State’s leading PIA operator with over €23 Bn under management.