Moloco becomes a unicorn at a $1 billion valuation after raising new funding for its mobile performance advertising platform
We featured Moloco more than two years ago after the mobile performance advertising startup founded by former Google engineers raised $11 million in Series B funding to advance the development of its proprietary Ad Cloud platform. Since then, the Palo Alto, California-based startup has grown to over 160 employees.
Today, Moloco told us in an email that it has received new funding at a valuation of $1 billion, making it a member of the highly coveted unicorn club. The exact amount of the funding was not disclosed. The round was led by Shinhan GIB, an investment banking unit of South Korea’s Shinhan Financial Group, with participation from other new and existing investors. Moloco had previously raised $15 million, including $11 million in a Series B round we wrote about in 2018.
Founded in 2013 by Ikkjin Ahn, Moloco empowers mobile apps to run their own advertising business by providing all of the required components as a cloud service. The company is led by an executive team with deep experience in mobile and online advertising infrastructure, as well as machine learning.
Ahn, who previously served as YouTube’s first monetization machine learning engineer and was the Big Data team lead for Android, has assembled top talent from Google, Amazon, Twitter, and other leading technology companies to help create the best machine learning algorithms in the advertising industry.
“The mobile advertising ecosystem runs increasingly on data, and no one provides better data-driven solutions than Moloco,” said a Managing Director at SAMSUNG Ventures America. “Whether for programmatic user acquisition or intelligent monetization, for in-house control of their data or as a fully managed service, MOLOCO’s machine learning-powered solutions give mobile businesses the edge they need to thrive in today’s data-driven mobile landscape.”
The funding comes as Moloco’s advertising reach has expanded significantly in recent years. The company has facilitated more than 100 trillion bid requests on behalf of its advertising partners since 2018 and currently serves more than 13 billion ad impressions monthly. Moloco’s platform reaches nearly 10 billion global devices monthly through 5.58 million publisher apps, including big-name publishers such as Nexon, Playrix, Netmarble, and many others.
Moloco is a top-performing media source according to industry measurement firms such as Singular, which ranked Moloco as the seventh-best overall ad network in its 2021 Singular ROI Index, and AppsFlyer, which ranked Moloco in the top 10 on its AppsFlyer Performance Index XII for numerous categories including Retention on both Android and iOS, Retention for both Gaming and Non-Gaming, its overall Global Power Rankings, and more. Moloco’s recent growth has come through global expansion, with strong growth throughout Asia-Pacific, Europe, and North America, as well as through category expansion, with the company experiencing rapid growth in non-gaming categories such as Commerce, Healthcare, Dating, Travel, Media, and more.
Moloco provides machine learning and programmatic advertising solutions to help mobile businesses drive fast, sustainable growth. The Moloco Engine is an advertising and monetization infrastructure suite that lets developers leverage the power of Moloco’s proprietary machine learning algorithms to enhance their own advertising features. Moloco Cloud, released in September 2020, gives marketers direct control over their programmatic advertising operations through self-serve functionality that lets them bring their mobile marketing in-house.