It has been a great first quarter for Korean startups in 2022 as within a week; it has seen three startups get the ticket to the ‘billion dollar club and become unicorns. Recently, Webtoon-web novel platform RIDI and mobile game company Haegin have become ‘unicorn’ startups. And now, Insider, an Artificial Intelligence-based digital marketing solution company, has joined the coveted club. Insider has raised an investment of $ 121 million (about 148.5 billion won) which puts its corporate value to $1.22 billion (about KRW 1.498 trillion).
Participating in this investment round include Qatar Investment Authority (QI), Sequoia Capital, Wamda Capital, Riverwood Capital, Endeavor Catalyst, 212 and Esas Private Equity. Insider plans to use the funds to strengthen its existing product portfolio and core technology and recruit talent. The startup plans to reinvest 60 billion won to expand Korean business and secure local talent.
Providing digital marketing solutions globally
Founded in 2012, Insider entered the Korean market in 2017. Currently, in 28 countries around the world, it is providing AI-based cross-channel personalized marketing solutions to more than 1,000 companies, including Samsung, LG, Lotte, Shinhan, L’Oreal, and Lightning Market. Insider’s integrated marketing platform provides personalization and artificial intelligence technology at all contact points with customers, from web, web push, email, advertisement, and SMS, as well as messenger apps such as KakaoTalk, Line, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and other offline channels.
Insider was recently evaluated in the ‘Forrester Wave: Cross-Channel Campaign Management Report for the 3rd quarter of 2021’ for providing the most flexible platform architecture compared to competitors based on its outstanding market localization and deployment capabilities. In addition, it was selected as a leader in the world’s largest tech marketplace, G2 Cloud Mobile Marketing, Personalization, Customer Journey Analytics, and Customer Data Platform, for 20 consecutive quarters.
Company to use funds to expand domestically
Sequoia Capital Chairman Pieter Kemps explained why he invested in Insider, saying, “If there is a lesson learned repeatedly at Sequoia Capital, it is that a company that provides joy to its customers will eventually succeed. Insider is a company that is helping brands deliver pleasure to their customers with advanced personalization technology, and is at the forefront of reshaping the digital customer experience for the future.”
Jinwoo Lee, CEO of Insider Korea, said, “Korea is a very important market for Insider, so we are investing aggressively. Taking advantage of this opportunity, we plan to focus all our business capabilities on localizing solutions and expanding our business in Korea, as well as securing key domestic talent.”
“Insider has tripled its business over the past three years, and tripled its corporate value through this round, achieving lightning-fast growth,” said Insider Co-Founder and CEO Hana Schillinger. “In addition, the size of the global team increased by 300% during the same period, and the customer pool is expanding that much.” “Leading companies around the world, such as Samsung Electronics, L’Oreal, and Adidas, are already trusting and using Insider’s solutions, and with this investment, we will accelerate our entry into the global market so that Insider can become the first choice for marketers around the world,” he added.
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