In a sign of the growing importance of mobile analytics, App Annie has raised another $17 million from its existing investors and is acquiring one of its competitors, Distimo.
Both companies provide data on how people are using mobile apps and mobile websites. App Annie has built a strong reputation in the mobile gaming world for providing data on the game apps it tracks, while Distimo has focused more on non-gaming apps. (VentureBeat has frequently referred to data from both companies in our coverage of apps and games: see App Annie news and Distimo news on VB.)
App Annie started in Beijing and is now headquartered in San Francisco, while Distimo is based in the Netherlands. Distimo will be renamed App Annie Netherlands and will serve as the company’s European R&D center, while its sales offices in London and San Francisco will be merged with App Annie’s offices in those cities, so the merger seems quite complementary in many ways.
“At the end of the day it was not so much for the differences as for the fact that we have a shared vision for where we want to bring the companies,” App Annie chief executive Bertrand Schmitt told VentureBeat.
“Mobile business is going to be big. It’s not just about mobile apps, but about digital content at large, including books, music, and video,” he said.
Indeed, App Annie has already started collecting data on e-book sales and usage on Amazon’s Kindle platform as well as Apple’s iBookstore. Tracking data on song downloads and video streaming is next, Schmitt indicated.
“We plan to extend this step by step,” he said.
If App Annie wants to track music and video usage in the iTunes Store and Google Play store, that will require a very high degree of cooperation from Apple and Google. Schmitt said that the company can pull it off, thanks to its excellent existing relationships with the two companies. Because it has established itself as a credible, neutral source of data, Schmitt said, App Annie is in a good position to work with both vendors.
In fact, Schmitt said, in Apple’s most recent quarterly earnings call, Apple used App Annie data to provide comparisons with Google. Meanwhile, Google is also an App Annie customer.
After the acquisition, App Annie will have nearly 600,000 apps relying on its analytics tools, representing 270,000 business users, an increase of about 130,000 apps and 50,000 users.
The combined company will have 240 employees.
As for the new funding — App Annie’s fourth — existing investors IDG Capital Partners, Greycroft Partners, and Sequoia Capital put in a combined $17 million, bringing the company’s total capital raised to $39 million.
It was an “inside round,” meaning no new investors were involved.
The new round will be used in part to fund the acquisition of Distimo and also to expand the company’s product line and marketing efforts worldwide. The valuation was not disclosed.
The companies also declined to state the price of the acquisition, only noting that it was for a combination of cash and stock.
“Our goal is to capture as much data as possible, first in the app space, and then in digital content at large,” Schmitt said.
“We intend to keep launching new products.”