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EU-based Social AdTech Firm Smartly.io Scoops $222 Million in Latest Funding Led by Providence Equity Partners

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Today, Scandinavian social media advertising company Smartly.io announced that it has raised $222 million in a major funding round led by Providence Equity Partners (“Providence”), a leading American private equity firm. Providence currently specializes in media, communications, education and information industries.

In an official blog, Smartly.io’s Founder and CEO, Kristo Ovaska stated that the new funding will be channelized to fuel strategic growth in new markets through acquisitions and organic investments in Europe.

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Today, Smartly.io competes with leading martech players in the social media advertising and intelligence market. Some of the key players in the segment include 4C, Kenshoo, Zeta (formerly Sizmek), Criteo, AdRoll, MediaMath, Choozle, Marin Software, dataxu, IgnitionOne, and Basis by Centro.

Kristo wrote, “We will continue building Smartly.io’s leading multi-platform advertising solution that combines creative production and ad buying. Angel investors and Lifeline Ventures Highland Europe have enabled us to grow with direct-to-consumer brands in Europe. Now, it is time to expand and in addition to digital natives, focus also on Fortune 500 companies and more traditional verticals like auto, retail, and travel, who are only starting to automate their creative processes.”

The company has also announced that it is expanding its leadership cadre. Providence operating partner Laura Desmond, former CRO of Publicis and CEO of Starcom and Adobe and DoubleVerify board member, is joining the company as Chair of the Board. Laura brings enriching experience from her previous roles in some of the biggest and most successful global marketing companies. She has been a part of many global consumer brands – including Samsung, Coca-Cola, Visa, Bank of America, P&G, Airbnb, Spotify, EA Sports, and Twitter.

Kristo has informed that Laura Desmond has spent considerable time with advertising and marketing platform, technology and software companies such as Facebook, Google, LiveRamp and Tencent.

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Kristo stated his next goals for the company. “I envision Smartly.io as the number one digital advertising platform for marketers. We want to help performance, brand, and creative teams to leverage enhanced creative capabilities to supercharge and optimize their campaigns. This new partnership with Providence allows us to continue innovating to better serve our clients as their social media advertising needs evolve,” wrote Smartly.io CEO.

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