Farmington Hills-based private equity firm Beringea has invested $6 million in London-based Blis, an advertising technology company that uses location and demographic data to define audiences. The company plans to open an operations and sales center in Detroit in the next year.
“Blis is an important international player in the digital advertising space whose technology is already helping media agencies, publishers, and brands unlock the power of location,” says Mark Donnelly, principal at Blis. “With its new Michigan office, Blis will be well-positioned to serve existing and potential U.S. customers, particularly those in the automotive industry.”
Beringea’s investment is part of a $25 million Series B round that will help fund Blis’ continued expansion into new markets, scale international sales and marketing activities, and enhance core data engineering capabilities. Blis expects to hire 20 employees for its Michigan office.
“We firmly believe that location technology is the future of digital advertising…,” says Greg Isbister, founder and CEO of Blis. “The investment also recognizes the unique value of location-based advertising and Blis’ ability to execute campaigns that deliver results.”
Isbister says since Blis’ launch in 2004, the company has expanded to more than 50 markets from eight offices in Europe, the Middle East, and the Asia Pacific region. He says the Blis platform serves targeted advertisements to specific locations and demographics groups. Clients include Samsung, McDonald’s, Peugeot, and Mercedes Benz, among others.
A year ago, Beringea invested $13 million in D3O, a developer of protective materials for the sports, military, and automotive industries. Beringea also operates an office in London.