Foundry Group’s investment in Medialets

by Ryan McIntyre

At Foundry Group we’ve made investments in a handful of companies that participate in the online advertising ecosystem. But as we talk about how we think about these investments here on our blog and in other forums, we describe our efforts in this area not as “advertising” but as “glue.” Our interest lies in the intersection of advertising and our glue theme. Specifically we view advertising through the lens of connective technologies – those that help advertisers connect with users and remove friction from the overall system (both AdMeld and Lijit are examples of companies in the Foundry portfolio that fit into this line of thinking).

Today we’re announcing an investment in Medialets – a company that sits right at the intersection of new advertising technologies and our glue theme. Based in New York, Medialets is a mobile analytics and advertising company that helps mobile application developers track usage and other statistics about their applications and provides technology that enables them to monetize those applications via advertising.

Medialets has built out this rich media advertising and analytics platform for iPhone and Android with support for BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Symbian and Palm Pre coming later this year. The company develops technologies that enable publishers to measure their audience and monetize their applications through advertising and that allow brands to leverage the unique capabilities of mobile platforms in advertisements in a way that is measureable whether the device is on- or off-line.

Founded in June of 2008 by a team led by multi-time entrepreneur Eric Litman, and launched concurrently with the iPhone AppStore in July 2008, Medialets quickly became a market leader in mobile analytics and advertising. By working directly with large brand advertisers and their agencies, Medialets has pushed the bounds on mobile advertising and has used its success with advertisers and agencies to more quickly grow the use of its analytics platform. To date, the company has seen over 70M downloads of its analytics code across 14M unique devices. In March of this year the company created the world’s first shakable advertisement, and in April it announced that it had processed its billionth event through Medialytics, the company’s analytics product.

We’ve been working with the company since shortly after their launch last summer and have had the opportunity to really dig into the business with Eric and the rest of the team at Medialets. We feel fortunate that they’ve chosen to work with us as a key partner in growing the business and are excited to go public today with our investment in the company.