Investment Round: Appsflyer, SoundHound, Button and Amplify

Funding rounds and investment arent just the lifeblood that keeps technology firms alive and growing. Theyre also fantastic indicators of which ideas and technologies are catching the interest of the business world and have the potential to impact the mobile marketing industry as a whole.

Investment Round is our weekly update on which firms have secured new funding, which areas are seeing the most financing, and who is putting up the cash that enables these firms to pushing the capabilities of mobile marketing further.

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Four Venture Capital Firms Invest $56m in AppsFlyer
Marketing data analytics startup AppsFlyer has secured an additional $56m (£45m) in its latest funding round, led by four global venture capital firms, as it plans to strengthen its existing business in Asia and develop its products.

Israel-based venture capital firms Qumra Capital and Pitango Growth, US-based firm Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing and German private equity and venture capital group Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners are the key new investors in this round of funding for the Israeli startup.

The company, which has secured a total of $84m in funding so far, plans to invest in new products and innovations with this latest round of investment, helping clients connect and measure their business data, including mobile, web, television and offline activities. It also plans to support its existing partnerships and operations in Asia, and explore merger opportunities.

“This funding round will help us continue to expand our capabilities and partnerships, especially in Asia Pacific, and to continue delivering the most efficient and powerful measurement platform for marketers,” said Ronen Mense, vice president for Asia at AppsFlyer.

“In the past two years, we delivered some game-changing products that fundamentally make marketing more accessible, measurable and predictable,” said Oren Kaniel, CEO and co-founder at AppsFlyer. “This funding round will continue to fuel our product development and advance our strategy to build the ultimate measurement platform for marketers.”

SoundHound Secures $75m to Power Conversational AI Platform
Audio identification and interaction firm SoundHound has raised a $75m round from strategic investors including Nvidia and Samsung Catalyst Fund to help it develop a massive conversational AI platform similar to Amazons Alexa.

The companys eponymous audio detection app has already been downloaded more than 300m times, and last year the firm launched Hound, its voice-powered assistant for iOS and Android, and Houndify, which enabled other developers to integrate the technology into their own apps quickly and easily.

SoundHounds grand goal is to build a voice-based AI that can understand complex queries in natural speech. The app already enables users to include multiple data points within a single query, allowing for longer questions and requests rather than relying on back-and-forth follow-up questions.

Since the firm launched Hound and Houndify, conversational interfaces have exploded in popularity, and providing companies with a simple third party voice control solution that also enables them to retain access to user data could well see the firms clients grow exponentially.

Series B Funding Round Raises $20m for Button
Mobile monetisation firm Button is approaching its third year in operation, and is celebrating this birthday with a $20m Series B round of financing, led by new investor Norwest Venture Partners, as well as existing investors Redpoint, DCM, and Greycroft.

The funding will enable Button to continue investing in products and partners, expanding its global footprint beyond the 30 languages and 70 countries that it already operates in. It plans on using the cash to invest in its team and fuel growth opportunities, using mentorship, coaching and skills workshops to ensure its employees are fully equipped and able to grow in their roles.

“With every round of funding, I try to take time to reflect and celebrate some of our accomplishments, but to also forge on with a renewed outlook on how we can best serve our partners,” said Michael Jaconi, co-founder and CEO of Button. “Button as a company, the people behind the product, has also grown and continues to bring me more pride than anything else.”

Startup Accelerator Amplify Closes Third Round of Investment
Amplify, the LA-based startup accelerator, has has received $10m in its latest round of funding to help fuel its mission of nurturing local tech firms in the greater Los Angeles area. The company has already invested $12.6m in 50 different startups over the course of its five years of operation.

The new funding will go towards continued investment in local talent, as well as operating the accelerators campus in Venice, California, where companies of various early stages stay for five months on average, meeting with investors and receiving mentorship. On average, the firm takes a 10 per cent stake in each company in exchange for advice, introductions and seed funding of between $100,000 and $250,000.

With LAs most famous startup, Snap, expected to undergo its IPO in the next few months, the LA tech scene has never had a higher profile, and Amplify plans to build on this. Three of its portfolio companies have closed Series B rounds in the last year, including on-demand storage firm Clutter, wine club Winc and flower delivery firm The Bouqs. Its newest investments include Ledge, a community lending platform and medical transportation network SafeRide Health.