Adway, a digital advertising network that wants to reimagine street-level media, announced this week that it has raised USD 6 million in seed funding, led by investment firm Upfront Ventures and others including Revel Ventures, Watertower Ventures, Inflection Capital, and more.
The funding will be used to support the commercialization of Adway’s patented advanced optical system, featuring small, smart projectors that display both static and video content on the sides of vehicles, as well as geofencing and other real-time data collection and analytics technologies.
Sasha Krylov, CEO, Adway told us “Adway’s patented optical projection technology is not your typical digital display; it offers advertisers a new way to make a lasting impression at the right time, right place. We go wherever advertisers need us to be: outside shopping centers, movie theaters, sporting events, concerts and along ‘main street,’ ensuring street-level buzz extends into digital engagement.”
Adway claim that their technology offers an alternative to traditional LED taxi toppers with three unique advantages:
- Unparalleled hardware flexibility: Adway’s devices are designed to be attached and detached from the side-view mirrors within seconds.
- Device size and position: The miniature device on the body of a car expands the possible fleet size by including previously excluded car types (SUVs, vans, etc.).
- Creative ad opportunity: Adway’s “off-axis ultra-short-throw optical system” coupled with its projecting technology allows seamless display and elegant static and motion content that appears fully integrated into the doors of the affiliated vehicles in HD. This provides brand new creative opportunities that can render the displays as more volumetric and captivating.
Being aware of their physical surroundings and using numerous sensors, Adway’s devices collect and transmit data to the client’s dashboard in real time. This allows advertisers to see their campaign performance and data as it is being collected, so they can better control their spend and targeting in a much more granular way.
Advertisers so far have included Cisco/Webex, Sweetfin, Rip Curl, Sandland, Sky Zone and ROW 8, all of whom have benefitted by using Adway’s platform to target specific locations with ad messaging that changes dynamically by geography.
Using Bluetooth technology, Adway identifies the number of active cellular devices within their vehicles’ proximity and tracks unique bluetooth identifiers. Adway does not collect individuals’ media access control (MAC) addresses, browser activity, cookies, etc. It is strictly a one-way communication that is totally anonymous and simply counts devices to inform advertisers how many people were exposed to an ad.
With Adway’s optical system, drivers can earn passive income by displaying brand logos, ads, and other graphics on the sides of vehicles via projections, eliminating the need to permanently change their exteriors. Drivers simply download the Adway driver app, which monitors their performance, facilitates payouts and offers en-route support.
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