Jul 23 2015
Anthony Loredo

Centro Acquires GraphScience to Help Marketers Optimize Social Ads at Scale


GraphScience Empowers Companies to Personalize Social Ads and Optimize in Real-Time;
Centro to Combine Automated Guaranteed, RTB and Social Into One Programmatic Ad-Buying Platform 

Chicago – July 23, 2015 – Centro (centro.net), a provider of enterprise-class software for digital advertising, today announced the acquisition of GraphScience (www.graphscience.com). GraphScience’s software, now available through Centro (www2.centro.net/social), helps marketers harness customers’ social media data to dynamically create and optimize, in real-time and at scale, thousands of personalized ads on Facebook. GraphScience’s customers include large e-commerce and retail companies with hundreds of product lines and thousands of SKUs. The acquisition strengthens Centro’s offerings by adding robust social ad capabilities that have delivered superior ROI for brands. It will boost the Centro platform, one of the most comprehensive programmatic ad-buying solutions encompassing all digital channels.

Centro’s technology platform is projected to manage nearly $400 million in digital ad spend this year, and its acquisition of GraphScience is its next major development following a Series B $30 million round of financing. Centro continues to consolidate digital advertising in one software stack -- first pioneering automated guaranteed media-buying technology, and then building a cross-channel real-time bidding (RTB) software solution. Now, Centro is expanding its product suite with GraphScience’s personalization and optimization engine for social ads. Centro recognizes the growing importance of social media to the marketing mix, as social media advertising spend reaches $8.334 billion in 2015 (“US Digital Markeing Forecast, 2014 To 2019,” Forrester Research, Inc., November 4, 2014). Centro’s unified software solutions help marketers maximize effectiveness on Facebook and other social sites while efficiently managing and executing all other forms of digital media.

“Centro is bringing together a unified platform that allows advertisers and agencies to solve one of the biggest problems in the industry -- fragmentation. The addition of GraphScience to our advertising software stack enables Centro to deliver a platform that automates the research, buying and execution of all digital inventory types,” said Shawn Riegsecker, CEO of Centro. “Accessing enhanced social media capabilities on our platform empowers our customers to drive better performance for their digital campaigns, no matter the channel, device, ad unit or buying tactic.”

GraphScience’s technology is available as a software license or managed service. It extracts insights from social audience data to predict which ad placements can meet ROI goals, enabling marketers to tune spend immediately. Although audience data on social media can help brands customize ads, it’s difficult for advertisers to discover, in real-time, which ad combinations will be more effective as campaigns progress at a very large scale. This challenge is magnified during competitive, high-volume shopping seasons such as back-to-school and holidays. GraphScience overcomes this challenge by identifying high performing combinations based on factors such as image, message, target audience, location and more. To boost adoption of the technology, Centro’s national sales team can deliver the solution to 2,500 customers in North America.

The entire GraphScience team will join Centro immediately, adding to the company’s more than 600 employees across North America. Centro is opening new positions in San Francisco to support development of its new social advertising solution, adding to the company’s existing 100 open opportunities (www2.centro.net/careers).

About Centro
Centro (centro.net) is creating a platform to make digital advertising easier. Its enterprise-class software centralizes, organizes and automates all digital media campaigns across all channels, accessing both guaranteed and biddable inventory, to achieve any objective. Our holistic approach gives marketers a single system of record to fulfill their research, planning, buying, optimization, reporting and reconciliation needs. Since 2001, Centro has successfully planned and executed more than 250,000 campaigns across all digital display platforms and ad format types. Headquartered in Chicago with 32 offices in North America, Centro has received numerous accolades for its commitment to employees and workplace culture.

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Anthony Loredo