Tag Archives: advertising

>@PersistentSys acquires Pune-based Mobile Search and Ad firm @HoopzPlanetInfo

Persistent Systems has announced that it has acquired Pune-based Hoopz.

What does Hoopz do?

It allows users of mobile to see “interesting” information without having to specifically search for it. Based on whatever keywords happen to be in the content you’re currently viewing on the mobile, whether it is in an app, or a document, or a website, like facebook, twitter, or anything else, or an email, sms, Hoopz will show you other content it believes you will find interesting. It will show you other apps, or information, or it will show you ads.

Based on the above description, Business Standard is calling Hoopz a “web discovery technology” company, while Medianama called it a “mobile ad firm”.

Interesting, Hoopz is not sold/provided to consumers directly. Instead they’ve chosen to go via the OEM route:

As a strategy, Hoopz is targeted towards hardware manufacturers than the application eco-system. “Hoopz is not hardware dependent, but as a technology framework layer it needs to be integrated into the operating system. Hence we prefer to work with OEMs. At present Hoopz is with over half-a-million handsets,” said Surekha. Going ahead the company will focus on international expansion into regions like APAC and China.

Why did Persistent buy Hoopz? Especially considering that Persistent now has a venture fund and could just have invested in Hoopz, like it did with wearable tech startup Hyginex, video calling iPad app Ustyme and life sciences company DxNow?

Here is what Anand Deshpande had to say about that:

“We did have the option to invest in the company through our venture arm too, but the technology and space that Hoopz is made us believe that acquiring them would be better,” said Anand Deshpande, chairman and MD, Persistent Systems. Deshpande also explains that though the application fits into the consumer internet space it can be scaled into the enterprise set-up too.


The acquisition fits in Persistent’s focus area of mobility and though Hoopz is consumer focused, Deshpande is betting on the data discovery platform than can be scaled to the enterprise segment. “Our objective is to align technology and the company. We keep looking at technologies and see how we can participate in them. This also means taking smaller companies to a bigger core group,” added Deshpande.


Pubmatic well positioned to take advantage of the growth of digital advertising

Business Standard has a good overview of Pune-based Pubmatic which sells products and services targeted towards the online advertising market.

Here are some excerpts:


In less than the time it took to type the first word of this sentence, advertisers are bidding for and placing advertisements on websites, thanks to the power of real-time bidding, or RTB. The technology, part of programmatic function or workflow automation, has also powered the rise of PubMatic, an enterprise software platform for large digital publishers such as NBC, Fox, eBay and Kayak.

“We help these large publishers price, package and sell all their ad space in a digital manner, using real-time bidding technology, which has become the backbone of internet advertising,” explains Rajeev Goel, co-founder and chief executive of PubMatic.

Pubmatic is technically a US based company, but all its software development happens out of Pune. Here is a profile of the company’s market:

PubMatic has about 500 clients globally. Their definition of a publisher is anyone who builds a relationship with consumers. Goel estimates of the global advertising market of a little more than half a trillion dollars, about $133 billion goes into digital advertising, while RTB accounts for about $30 billion.

He says digital advertising is growing 50-70 per cent annually, and steadily increasing its share in the advertising market. “More and more radio is consumed via digital services such as Spotify and Pandora, more and more billboard advertising is digital billboards and, of course, you have all types of internet advertising, on a computer screen, on mobile devices, video ads, etc. Our focus is on that entire digital portfolio, which will eventually be 100 per cent of advertising,” Goel says.

The US is PubMatic’s largest market, followed by Europe and Asia-Pacific. The company has clients in 30 countries and significant footprints in New York and Pune, where its development team is based. PubMatic has 275 employees in Pune, and plans to hire 80 more this year. It has expanded its Pune hub to a 60,000-sq-ft facility. India is not yet a major market, but with around 100 million internet users and growing, Goel says PubMatic aims to be the top player in India through the next couple of years. He doesn’t disclose the company’s clients in India, but brands such as Snapdeal or Rediff seem to be typical examples, going by their profiles.

Read the full article

Will Pubmatic be Pune’s First Software Product Company IPO?

Online ad optimization platform maker, PubMatic, which is developed wholly out of Pune, has just hired Steve Pantelick, a CFO who specializes in preparing companies for an IPO, reports VC Circle.

Earlier, Business Insider ran a story claiming that Pubmatic had gotten an offer of $300 million from Amazon, but turned it down in favor of going for an IPO.

Pubmatic is doing extremely well, as seen in this excerpt from the VC Circle article:

PubMatic acquired ReviNet, a US-based advertising optimisation company in May this year. It recently expanded to Europe and launched more data management and mobile products. Its GAAP revenue has risen 33 times in the past two years and by 51 per cent between the second and the third quarter of this fiscal year.

While Pubmatic is technically US-based, it has two co-founders who are in Pune (Mukul Kumar and Anand Das), and all of its development happens in Pune (with the exception of the ReviNet acquisition).

If Pubmatic does indeed go for an IPO, it will the first mostly-Pune-based software product company to do so. While last year’s Persistent IPO was many years in the making, Pubmatic is just 5 years old, and will be a great source for inspiration for technology startups in Pune.

Pubmatic has been one of PuneTech’s favorite Pune startup companies, and we’ve been covering it (see here and here) since our first month of operation in 2008. We wish it good look, and hope that this is just a first in the series of Pune IPOs

Update: Reader V. Krishna points out Kale Consultants was probably Pune’s first software product IPO. Kale Consultants provides solutions to the airline and travel industry, and has a mix of products and services, so it is indeed, arguably, Pune’s first Software Product Company IPO.)

Overview of Sokrati – Online Ads Optimization Startup

(A few days back, Pune-based startup Sokrati announced that it has received an undisclosed amount of Series-A funding from Inventus Capital Partners, a company that has also invested in such companies as RedBus.in, TeliBrahma, and FundsIndia.

PuneTech chatted with co-founder and CEO Ashish Mehta to get more details of the Sokrati story.)

About Sokrati

Sokrati is a company that provides technology and services to merchants on the web for automated optimization of the placements of their online ads. For example, if you’re an e-commerce company, you probably spend a lot of money on buying Google AdWords, and other ads on various websites around the world. As the competition in your market heats up, it becomes more and more difficult to figure out where exactly to place ads, and what kinds of ads to get maximum conversions (in this domain, a “conversion” is when a person who sees your ad clicks on it and becomes a customer.)

On Founders and How Sokrati was Founded

Sokrati was founded by Ashish Mehta, Santosh Gannavarapu, and Anubhav Sonthalia, who were previously working for Amazon in Seattle, USA, but then quit to form Sokrati, and moved to India about 3 years ago.

The founders managed the Paid Marketing for Amazon from business & technology perspective. They saw that Paid Search Marketing (and Online Marketing in general) is very challenging for advertisers with dynamic content on their website – typically catalog based Advertisers in Shopping, Travel or Classifieds domain. And none of the established players like Marin Software, Efficient Frontier or Kenshoo provided an apt solution. They had some ideas on how to make it work for advertisers in these domains and started moon-lighting in November 2007. They signed up as one of the Amazon Affiliates, and spent weekends and after-work hours to build a proof-of-concept model. Within a year, they drove an incremental revenue of $20 million to Amazon – purely from the rudimentary PoC that they built on the side! It was easy then to quit their jobs in Dec 2008 and came to Pune to build a more production ready, more intelligent and sophisticated technology.

The idea & focus overall has still remained the same; though they are constantly taking feedback from clients and building product extensions to entail a larger piece of a more unified Digital Marketing & Analytics.

For more information about the founders see the Sokrati management team page.

Case Study to Illustrate Sokrati Offerings and Technology

To get an idea of what exactly Sokrati does, and how, consider this case study with a client who is a prominent jobs portal in India.

The client was managing Paid Search Campaigns (i.e. buying of search ads on Google and other search engines) in-house, incurring heavy spends. The key issue was – for the trailing 1 year or so, performance had started to plateau and there wasn’t much momentum in the campaigns. Scaling the campaigns with a controlled Cost-per-Action was getting very challenging & difficult for the client. And while experimenting various ways (mostly manual), the campaign structure + quality of keywords were just getting worse by the time.

Sokrati helped the advertiser ramp up their volumes by almost 2x within 8 weeks of campaign management by Sokrati.

The basic approach Sokrati took was to use Sokrati’s proprietary data mining & clustering algorithms to generate extensive set of keywords (from about 68000 to roughly 1.5 million) & very targeted ads. This allowed a lowering of CPCs (cost-per-click) & improved relevancy – eventually leading to better CPAs (cost-per-action) & higher volumes. This combined with real-time optimizations leveraging decay-rate algorithms has helped lower the overall CPA by 25% without sacrificing on any of the volumes. In other words, to get exactly the same amount of resumes, it cost the client 25% less in ad spending using Sokrati’s algorithms.

The other critical improvement provided was the ability to track beyond “binary” conversion flag. Sokrati’s proprietary tracking system is able to capture several more conversion parameters. For example, before Sokrati, the client was measuring only the number of resumes and the amount incurred to acquire them. Now, with Sokrati tracking, they are able to track the quality of the resume – whether it was an IT or Bank related; whether its a Fresher or had 5+ years experience. Not only that, the advertiser is now able to provide differential ROI targets for different “mix” of conversions; and Sokrati is able to optimize the mix in real-time.

About Their Technology Stack

Sokrati technology is built using Ruby-on-Rails for the front end and has Linux + MySQL + Java on the backend. They are using the cloud quite extensively have close to 50 servers now, all hosted on Amazon EC2 (US & Singapore). They did evaluate a few vendors in India – but didn’t find anything interesting or as reliable.

We asked Ashish whether it was difficult to hire developers with the required knowledge in Pune.

Hiring has always been a challenge & I don’t think, its a function of Pune specifically, but India overall. Though we’ve been very fortunate to get the key senior members of the team that are like-minded and truly start-up oriented, it has been lot slower than we would have liked. For example getting talent with data mining or machine learning skill-set is a struggle. We have interviewed over 100+ candidates but still haven’t been able to fulfill the positions; and have a long list of open head-counts in the company.

What is the one piece of advice you would give to founders of other technology companies in Pune – something you learnt during your journey so far and you wish you had known earlier.

Our start-up stint has just begun and there will be many things that we will learn either upfront or by failing over the next few years. But I’d like to share 2 learnings that we’ve gained from our stint so far –

1) One key learning that I’d like to share is to not procrastinate on raising funds. Once a start-up feels they are ready to raise funds or think they “need” to raise funds to grow faster (and only IF they feel so) – then the founders should not delay this process. As the funds will provide the stimulus to exponentially grow faster. I think we could have raised funds about 6 months back by being more aggressive but we let it take its own sweet time. In the internet world, where competition is so cut-throat & landscape so dynamic, even a small delay or a few missed opportunities could prove to be very fatal.

2) Customer Servicing & listening to their feedback is ultra-important. Coming from Amazon, we ingrained this idea directly & indirectly, on how to value each and every feedback from customer (big or small). But we’ve experienced that several start-ups, especially in India, are so obsessed with their product / services that they tend to overlook this aspect of the business. Its very vital to put yourselves into the customers’ shoes while building the product.

Interview with Mukul Kumar, Co-founder & VP at Pubmatic

Yesterday, Pubmatic.com announced that it had raised $7.5 million in funding from Helion Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Nexus Venture Partners. This is the third round of funding, and in all they have raised $18 million.

Pubmatic, whose development team is entirely in Pune, is an Ad Optimization Platform that helps websites increase their ad revenues. We interviewed Mukul Kumar, the Pune-based Co-founder and Vice President of Engineering of Pubmatic to understand better what exactly Pubmatic does, and how it does it.


Click on the “Play” button above to listen to the interview. If you don’t see a play button, or are unable to hear the interview for some reason, click here.

(This is an experiment. Audio interviews are much easier for us to do than full-fledged text interviews. So, if you like this, please let us know, and we can do many more such interviews. If you don’t, then we’ll assume that nobody is interested in listening to audio interviews, and we’ll go back to doing our (few, rare) text interviews. If any reader is willing to spend the time to transcribe (or ever write a text summary) of the interview, please let us know. You can get attribution a link from PuneTech in return for this social service! Thanks.)

Mukul Kumar is VP Engineering at Pubmatic. Search PuneTech archives for more interesting articles about and by Mukul
Mukul Kumar is VP Engineering at Pubmatic. Search PuneTech archives for more interesting articles about and by Mukul

About the Interviewee – Mukul Kumar

Mukul Kumar, is a founding engineer and VP of Engineering at Pubmatic. He is based in Pune and responsible for PubMatic’s engineering team. Mukul was previously the Director of Engineering at PANTA Systems, a high performance computing startup. Previous to that he joined Veritas India as the 13th employee and was Director of Engineering for the NetBackup group, one of Veritas’ main products. He has filed for 14 patents in systems software, storage software, and application software and proudly proclaims his love of ? and can recite it to 60 digits. Mukul is a graduate of IIT Kharagpur with a degree in electrical engineering.

Mukul blogs at http://mukulblog.blogspot.com/

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PuneTech’s “Monetization Plan” was an April Fools Day Prank

Our article yesterday, about our “Sponsored Saturdays” and “Pay Per Tweet” monetization plan was an April Fools Day prank.

Actually, we were overwhelmed by the amount and intensity of the response generated by that article. In fact, we feel bad for having toyed with the feelings of all the people who actually got fooled by that article and brought such strong emotions and passion to the comments.


And hopefully, you’ll forgive us this moment of fun.

– – –

The post generated a huge number of comments. At the time of writing this article, there are 78 comments. There were three kinds of commentors on that post:

  • Those who left a comment pointing out that this was an April Fools Day prank. We held all those comments in moderation until this morning, to ensure that the fun did not end prematurely. So nobody saw those comments yesterday, while the debate raged on. They are now visible, but marked with a [***]. So when you read all those comments, remember that the comments marked with a [***] were not visible yesterday.
  • Those who realized that this is a prank, but decided to join the fun and leave fake comments. I should point out that this was not pre-planned by us. Of these commentors, only Arun and Amit Kumar knew about the prank beforehand – all others guessed and jumped into the fray on their own. You guys made this much more fun than we had imagined!
  • Those who did not realize that this is a prank, and either expressed their displeasure with the new policy, or defended our right to monetize in this way. To all of you: our sincere thanks for taking the time out to let your feelings be known. While this time it was just a prank, we do really hope that in the future you will let us know your feedback when tricky policy issues regarding PuneTech do crop up, as they sometimes do. Especially the ones who blasted us – we do need readers like that to keep us pointed in the correct direction. Thanks again.

– – –

In any case, you must read the comments. It will be an entertaining experience. As they say, iss meiN drama haiN, emotion haiN, comedy haiN, tragedy haiN. Just remember that all comments marked with a [***] were not visible yesterday.

Also, you do subscribe to the PuneTech comments feed (or comments-by-email), don’t you?

– – –

Even the PuneMirror got fooled. In this (unrelated) article they wrote about TechMarathi, they included the following line:

[PuneTech] was until recently a non-profit venture. They have just introduced a paid content section for one day of the week.

Oh well…

– – –

Vishwajeet left a comment with the best conspiracy theory explanation:

It seems you have taken an appropriate day for announcing this, if it does not goes well among the community than you can take it back as April fool’s day prank 🙂 way to go.

No. This was always an April Fools Day prank. Arun, Anup and Amit Kumar, the 3 fake “customers” whom we “quoted” in the article knew that this was a prank (because we had to take their permission to misuse their names in this way).

– – –

Titash asked this pertinent question:

Is monetisation a must for every human endeavor?

Although we argued with Titash yesterday while the game was being played, in reality, we do agree with Titash. Our answer is a resounding no. We have no intentions of monetizing PuneTech.

There was some discussion about sustainability of PuneTech, but here’s the point: It takes very little hard cash to keep PuneTech running. The only expenses we have are the domain name and hosting, both of which are cheap enough that we don’t mind paying from our own pockets.

The main “investment” in PuneTech is in terms of time – our own time, as well as the time of so many other members of the tech community in Pune who do things for the community. So, if we must worry about sustainability, we should think in terms of time and not money.

Money cannot buy the quality that Pune Tech needs. Passion is not for sale. Sure, we could use money to pay for getting PuneTech a decent, much needed, design. But that’s not really what PuneTech is about. Money won’t buy high quality content. Money couldn’t have bought this article by Dhananjay Nene, nor this article by Addepalli. You couldn’t have paid Abhijit Athavale to start PuneChips and TechMarathi certainly wont be able to afford all the volunteers who work on it.

Time is more than money! So please “sponsor” PuneTech by donating some of your time. Write an article.

– – –

13-year old UpaPilot commented:

Rs. 10k per post? Are you mad?

I think he was on to something there…

– – –

Asuph said:

And Navin, you’re taking this too far. Even fake ‘angry’ commentors!

No, we did not fake any angry commentors! The fake angry commentors were genuine. This is just another example of the community coming forward to help out. Isn’t UGC (user generated content) great?

– – –

The Discrete Log vs Indiscrete Log comments were just too funny! Hats off Shashikant and Dhananjay!

– – –

Still can’t decide whether Anil was fooled (exhibit 1, exhibit 2, exhibit 3) or not. But I guess this comment forces us to give him the benefit of doubt.

– – –

You can all go back to work now. The …umm… “future of Pune will suffer” if you don’t!

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Introducing “Sponsored Saturdays” – paid articles on the PuneTech blog & twitter account

(Update: This article was a PuneTech April Fools Prank. For a full apologyexplanation, see our article on 2 April.)

At PuneTech, one of the things that gives us pleasure is coming up with new ways in which this site can help the tech community in Pune. To quote Dhananjay Nene, we display a “willingness to experiment, learn and retry.” With this in mind, we are introducing a new feature that will help local small businesses, our readers, and us, all at the same time – Sponsored Posts on PuneTech – a win-win-win situation.

Of the 2 years we’ve been in existence, for 1-1/2 of them we’ve been refusing offers for paid advertisements and paid job postings on PuneTech because we don’t want to commercialize PuneTech. However, after receiving many impassioned pleas from small local startups, we have reached the conclusion that we have hit upon a major pain point, a desperate need that needs to be filled. Small startups cannot afford the normal PR and job posting channels and the future of Pune is suffering because of that. There is no good channel for small local companies to market themselves and get much needed visibility. Mainstream media is too big, too broad, and too expensive – and most importantly, generates very little long-term impact (or conversions).

After thinking over this problem for a long time, we have decided to allow commercial postings on PuneTech. We believe this is not really a reversal of our “not commercial” policy – is more of a social service.

With this in mind, we are introducing Sponsored Saturdays. Every Saturday, the PuneTech blog and front page will feature a paid article, which will either be a company profile written by the company itself, or a set of job postings by the company. The article will be clearly marked as a “Sponsored Post”. A flat price of Rs. 10,000 entitles a sponsor to post an article on the PuneTech blog on the next available Saturday slot. This will also be cross posted to twitter, the PuneTech linked-in group, and will go out in the PuneTech RSS Feed and to the e-mail subscribers. There will be no other posts on PuneTech for the next 48 hours – i.e. the sponsored post will stay on the front page until Monday morning. Single tweet postings may be purchased at Rs. 500 per tweet. We will consider special discounted rates for small and deserving companies who are not yet funded.

We are very pleased with the reactions we are getting from our early sponsors. Anup Tapadia, founder of of TouchMagix, who bought the first sponsored slot this Saturday, has high hopes from this program:

Through the normal channels, it is really difficult to find high quality programmers for the kind of cutting edge work we are doing in Pune. For example, a post on the standard job sites brings us hundreds of resumes, but not one of the candidates can answer basic computer science questions. Given the kind of readership PuneTech has, we are expecting to get some very good resumes.

Amit Kumar Singh, who plans on using this service to find customers for his software, says:

Finding the first few customers for a new product is the most difficult. And a sale to local customers will be much easier because the trust factor will be higher. All I’m expecting is 10 signups, and I’m sure word-of-mouth will take care of the rest.

Arun Prabhudesai of Trak.in commented:

All bloggers and mainstream media are doing this, either publicly or secretly. I don’t understand why you guys waited so long. But I’m glad you are finally doing it. Count me in.

For sponsoring a post, and for a copy of the detailed terms and conditions, please write to: sponsor@punetech.com. We do have some legal fine print, but the basic terms are these – the sponsored posts must be related to Pune, must be relevant to readers of PuneTech, and must adhere to the standards of quality of the rest of the PuneTech website. PuneTech reserves the right to refuse any sponsored post for any reason whatsoever, and the decision of the PuneTech editors if final.

We hope that many local companies take advantage of this opportunity.

Note: A majority of the PuneTech advisory board are in full support of our decision, and completely agree with us that this move will be welcomed by the tech community in Pune. In the interest of full transparency, we would like to disclose that two of our advisors who did not agree with this decision have resigned from the board. However, we are confident that after a few months of successfully running this program, we will be able to convince them to re-join.

We will continue to tweak and fine tune this program based on the response and feedback we receive. So please let us know your thoughts in the comments below. Thanks.

2nd April Update: As noted at the top, this article was an April Fools Day prank. To ensure that comments on this post did not give away the prank too early, all comments that mentioned “April Fools Day” were held in moderation until the end of the day. All these comments have now been approved, but we have prefixed these comments with a [***]. When reading the comments below, please note that all comments beginning with the [***] were not visible to anybody on 1st April.

Company Profile: hover.in

Go Ergo has an interview of the founders of Pune-based web startup hover.in. Excerpt:

Q: Hover.in was born out of constant frustration that most bloggers and web publishers face regarding their content presentation and monetisation. Could you explain how hover bridges this gap?
A:? As a professional blogger, one of my main problems has been monetising (making money) from my blog without compromising on user experience. Normally, a visitor does not like to see too many ads on a blog or a website. Most of the new visitors will turn away from the blog on seeing too many ads. Hover was born to address this pain point!
Hover.in is an in-text “customised content” and “customised ad” delivery platform for websites and blogs. It enables web publishers to link and monetise keywords or phrases within their existing content.
Till date, in-text technology has been primarily used only to display contextual ads – mostly automated, without any publisher control. However, with hover.in, publishers can create and customise the content appearing within the hover bubble (hoverlet). Hover.in goes even further, allowing the publisher to change the look and feel of the hoverlet as per the theme of the website or blog.

Read the full interview.

hover.in provides web publishers and bloggers with in-text customized content display. It also provides opportunities for contextual in-text ads for increased revenues to publisher. More information about hover.in from the PuneTech wiki:

Key Features

  • Complete control of what appears within the hover window, via an administrative panel
  • Publishers can choose between hundreds of 3rd party contextual widgets or browse applications within the hover.in community
  • Improve reader engagement by displaying targeted content for particular key phrase of choice, or choose default applications
  • Customize the interface, add your own content or integrate advertisements from third party ad networks

Hover.in is currently in closed alpha and will be opening up shortly to selected beta users.




PubMatic Launches Default Optimization Service to Recapture $1 Billion in Lost Advertising Revenue

A large number of websites rely on advertising as their primary source of income. Typically the ads are served by third party ad networks (for example Google’s adsense). When an ad network is unable to find an appropriate ad for a specific page being served to a specific reader, they put in default or public service ads (PSAs). This is not good because the website makes no money from PSAs.

Ad optimization service Pubmatic, says that more than half the ads that get shown at an average website are PSAs:

Over the past several months we’ve studied just how severely default ads are affect our publishers and the numbers are jaw dropping. We found that ad networks defaulted 56% of the time on average and as much as 87% of the time. We also found that that the traditional static daisy chain of ad networks may be effective at reducing blank ads but is highly ineffective at maximizing a publisher’s revenue. Between 20% and 30% of publishers’ ad inventory is going to waste.


This is of course terrible, if true.

Now Pubmatic has just launched the default optimization service that automates the process of contacting other ad networks whenever the ad being served by the primary network is a PSA

PubMatic’s default optimization service automates the reselling process, allowing publishers to instantly redirect unsold ad inventory back to PubMatic, which fills that inventory with the highest paying ad impression every time. PubMatic’s new service is an automated solution for the billion-dollar loss that plagues the industry.

For more details, see the press release.
Related articles:
Pubmatic and Komli to power all eBay.in ads
PubMatic releases AdPrice Index: Sensex for Online Ads
See also:  The PuneTech wiki profile of Pubmatic , and Mukul Kumar, head of engineering at Pubmatic (based in Pune).

(!)Yureekah – the Google of Online Advertising

(!)Yureekah is a Pune+New York based company which is aiming to become the Google of online advertising information. They feel that information about ad campaigns, competitive analysis, lead generation, which used to be the domain of highly-paid experts, should be accessible to anybody at the click of the mouse.

Here’s their pitch:

Today millions of ads run on millions of portals hourly. Imagine a world where you could identify where all your competitors are advertising, and use that information to decide how to advertise in the portals that best fit your brand — irrespective of geography, language, and time zone.

This service is now live (although it is still in “alpha”). According to co-founder and CEO, Devaraj Southworth:

“We set out with a singular mission; to organize the world’s online advertising information and make it universally accessible and useful through a single, automated portal – and in the process eliminate the enormous inefficiencies that currently exist. (!)Yureekah is free to all users, enabling agencies and advertisers to reduce costs, but also levels the playing field for small business owners and individual advertisers by offering the same access and ability. We believe that our suite of products will change the way in which traditional online advertising operates. Our objective is to develop a collaborative online platform for all online advertising needs and intend to replicate the success of Google’s AdWord in the Display space.”

(!)Yureekah was started by the serial entrepreneurs behind iThink Labs and 30Seven Design. How did it get started?

At 3:00 am EST, 12:30 pm IST March 5, 2007 my cell phone rings. “Hello” I squeak into the receiver. Immediately I recognize the excited voice of my business partner Vishal over 3000 miles away. “Devaraj, are you sleeping?” “Uh, I was,” I replied. “Listen, we have to figure out a way to streamline the manual processes involved with online competitive research,” Vishal said. “This minute?” I questioned, rubbing the sleep from my eyes. “Yes, we may lose a $1 mm media pitch if we don’t provide a global competitor analysis to our client by next week,” Vishal exclaimed. This was clearly a business problem, but also an opportunity that deserved attention. There was no way we could provide real time competitor analysis globally within one week. If we, as a boutique agency, were facing these issues then certainly larger agencies, direct advertisers, and small businesses owners were feeling the same pains. That’s how it all started, a simple conversation between two guys at 3 am which fundamentally altered our frame of reference, how we approached our existing businesses, and our lives.


See full profile of (!)Yureekah at the PuneTech wiki for more details of target customers of (!)Yureekah, and the people behind it.