Congratulations to the good people over at open source ad serving venture Openads, which has bagged $15.5m (£7.9m) in a Series B funding round led by Accel Partners.

The cash, which the firm says will be used to boost its product development and headcount, was also provided by existing investors Index Ventures, First Round Capital, Mangrove Capital Partners and O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures.

It follows a $5m first round of financing back in the summer.

Openads, originally created out of sales house Unanimis, says it has around 100,000 websites using its free sell-side ad serving software to manage and monitor campaigns.

Behavioural targeting providers are increasingly using its network of publishers to gather visitor data. It is also hoping to boost its user community further through the launch of a hosted service this quarter (the beta is set to go live today).

According to co-founder Scott Switzer, the funding will see it starting to focus more on monetisating its base of users this year:

“At the moment, we are focused on product development and making sure our publishers have the tools they need to be successful.

“We have held back on commercialisation, but once we have built up a huge number of publishers then we can start providing some more commercial services that continue to be valuable to them.”

In a statement, Andrew Braccia of Accel Partners added: 

“The rapid growth of the global online advertising market requires the adoption of next generation infrastructure and services for publishers and advertisers alike.

“Openads’ open source heritage and deep global publisher footprint make it uniquely positioned to play a pivotal role in the evolution of the digital media landscape”.

Meanwhile, Index Ventures has announced it has led a €7m (£5.3m) round of Series B funding for Criteo, a provider of recommendation technology to etailers.

The money, Index said, would be used by Criteo to expand into new markets, including the UK.
 
Related research:
Online Ad Serving Buyer’s Guide 2008

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