San Francisco-based iSocket has raised $5 million in funding, led by Time Warner Investments. The round reflects publishers’ growing interest in the nascent area of programmatic direct ad buying.
This latest round represents the second half of iSocket’s B series (the first half was led by Foundry Group) and brings the company’s total to $16.3 million. The money will bolster iSocket’s technology stack, including “iSocket for Publishers” and “iSocket for Advertisers.”
Programmatic direct allows advertisers to buy fixed-price, reserved inventory directly from publishers while using technology to streamline the burdensome and often paper-heavy invoicing process. Consequently, it often has a heavy sales automation component.
It’s this last point, iSocket CEO Richard Jalichandra said, that has resonated most with premium publishers in recent months. Many were reluctant to allocate a significant portion of their inventory to real-time bidding (RTB) – which is often equated erroneously with programmatic.