San Francisco-based startup NovoRoll is doubling down on mobile and outstream video with a $2.5 million injection of growth capital from Silicon Valley Bank.
The company, which helps publishers monetize outstream and native video, had previously raised a $700,000 seed round. It will use its new financing to grow its engineering resources and global footprint with new offices in Europe and APAC.
NovoRoll’s headcount had already grown from four to 25 people since its launch two years ago, and now the company expects to hire additional staff to support its new geographic push.
Like startups Connatix and Pulpix, NovoRoll is part of a new wave of video platforms that aren’t solely focused on monetizing desktop pre-roll in the way early ad nets were.
Now, with outstream, vertical video and other formats emerging as quick cash cows for publishers, there’s greater demand to ensure quality traffic, according to Yuval Gliks, CEO of NovoRoll.
NovoRoll claims its video tools help publishers like USA Today and VentureBeat achieve a better fill rate on their video ads and support key advertiser KPIs, which increasingly include viewability.
The company has invested in connecting to four of the top third-party fraud detection tools to automatically filter all traffic running through its platform.
“Unlike two or three years ago when you still saw a lot of suspicious traffic in the market,” Gliks said, “there’s much more demand now for multiple third-party measurement partners, and you’re seeing demand partners shift budgets toward platforms that facilitate a direct connection to publishers.”
Since it helps publishers monetize native and outstream formats, NovoRoll technically competes with larger ad nets like Teads that are already established in Europe and APAC.
“Because we’re relatively small, we can offer publishers personalized service and maybe more of a customized solution for their needs,” Gliks said.
One ongoing pain point NovoRoll has noticed among its publisher and SSP partners is the transition from Flash to HTML5.
Despite the early July deadline for the big Flash cutoff, Gliks said the evolution has occurred more gradually.
“It creates some confusion because while most publishers have heard about the new requirements, we still see advertisements coming from Flash [players],” he said. “We don’t think this will happen in one day, but eventually the demand will shift toward HTML5 solutions in the next couple months.”