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Crosslink Capital backs Affine Systems

Affine Systems has closed a USD5 million round of venture capital Series B financing led by Crosslink Capital, with continued support from existing investor Highland Capital Partners. Affine has received a total of USD8 million in funding since 2007.

“Affine provides clarity into video content so advertisers can buy unstructured online videos the same way they buy traditional television programming,” says Mike Sullivan, CEO and co-founder at Affine Systems. “We plan to use Crosslink Capital and Highland’s investment to scale our operations and bring advertisers the tools they need to be confident that their ads will be shown in connection with the most relevant and appropriate online videos.”

Advertisers and media buyers have a large amount of contextual information about television programs for media buying purposes. By contrast, there’s an enormous amount of video content online but classification does not exist for a majority of it, such as if the video is user-generated, unsafe or contains violent or sexual content advertisers may not want their ads running against. This has become a big problem for advertisers who are hesitant to advertise blindly against online video content, but who understand that they need to take advantage of the massive online video audience. Affine was the first to market with a contextual data platform providing advertisers with the same transparency for online video buys they would have for television buys and the control to select exactly where they want their ads to appear.

“Affine gives brands the transparency they need to move billion dollar television ad budgets over to cheaper and more effective formats in online video,” says Richard de Silva, venture partner at Highland Capital Partners. “Affine’s proprietary algorithms generate brand safety and targeting data. This is the missing piece of infrastructure the video market needs.”

“Video is the fastest-growing advertising segment and Affine’s technology offers brands, agencies and networks the peace of mind that their ads are being viewed by the most appropriate, relevant audiences,” says Jim Feuille (pictured), general partner at Crosslink Capital. “The company is at the cutting edge of video targeting technology and this investment will further accelerate Affine’s momentum and growth.”

Both investment firms have a successful record of investing in new media companies. Highland’s previous investments include the contextual search advertising company Quigo, while Crosslink’s prior investments include visual searchwebsite and web analytics company Omniture.

Affine is based in San Francisco and was founded in 2007 by Mike Sullivan and Bobby Impollonia. With more than 10 years of computer vision technology experience, the company has multiple patents pending and a broad partner network providing access to more than 85 percent of online video impressions.

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