Last week, Bangalore-based totally picture reputation and visual listening platform, gazeMetrix, was obtained by Toronto-based totally social intelligence corporation Sysomos. Co-based with the aid of Deobrat Singh, Saurabh Paruthi and Debayan Banerjee in 2012, gazeMetrix, is a platform which permits brands to recognise when and wherein their logo became photographed throughout social media. The idea to release gazeMetrix was precipitated whilst watching an IPL fit, and at that point, the team had no idea that it might grow to be such an interesting product in an effort to get ultimately get received by means of Sysomos.
It all began with a weekend in Delhi….
Deobrat recollects fondly the weekend they constructed this app which allows a person to download other apps. All one had to do changed into take a image of all of the apps one desired to down load, say through clicking a picture of all the apps at the smartphone of a chum, and the app might recognize all of the apps in that image and down load them. Though the group polished the product pretty a chunk, however it could not garner lots traction. Inspite of low downloads of the app, the team nonetheless managed to raise seed investment to the tune of $40k from angel investors. These angel buyers were nobody else but bosses of their respective businesses who simply invested inside the concept. The team so as to mention had no model in region, but it turned into one funding they garnered even without having to make a formal presentation. Such become the power of the underlying concept! It would be the era they would later observe to construct gazeMetrix, brought on by way of an IPL fit!
The IPL Match
It was the IPL season of March-April 2012 which caused the actual push for gazeMetrix. While watching one of these matches, Deobrat realised that manufacturers pumped in quite a few money by using setting their logos at the gamers’ helmets, uniforms and such a lot of other chocolates. He puzzled in the event that they have a way to determine out the ROI from these. His seek led him to a organization known as TAM Media Research, which targeted these metrics on their internet site as to which emblem had how a lot visibility in a selected match. Deobrat determined to pitch his generation to TAM. One name on the reception, and a meeting turned into constant with the head of analytics. He informed her that they had a software product which did the same-measuring visibility. She asked the crew to give a demo! Of path given the reality that they only had the technology with them at that second and not the actual product, the crew got down to broaden the product in per week’s time. The organisation cherished the product and started out a pilot with it, this turned into a starting of gazeMetrix’s adventure.
During this time, the group additionally participated within the startup occasion Unpluggd held at Bangalore, wherein the product obtained a favourable reception. It additionally controlled to garner the eye of some VCs. By that point, the group had exhausted tons of their seed funding, with most effective approximately $1,200 (INR80k) left inside the financial institution, and the flight tickets to Bangalore costing them another $300 (INR20k). However as luck could have it, they evoked the hobby of the accelerator 500 Startups. The crew although have been approached via other investors as nicely, however they determined to sign a term sheet with 500 Startups as it provided them a chance of amassing global exposure. The team got to spend 6-7 months in the Silicon Valley and honed their product over a length of 12 months.
While the group pleasant-tuned the product, they realized that TV analytics become a tough space to interrupt into. Brands were no longer prepared to buy statistics from every body except Nielsen. That became additionally the time whilst Instagram turned into getting famous. While analytics companies have been focusing extra on the text within the photographs, however they have been not paying attention to the snap shots itself. The crew decided to run a pilot in this. Using gazeMetrix, they searched for Starbucks images in Twitter pictures. The seek ended in approximately 9,000 pics. Similarly, they ran pilots for different client manufacturers which include Coke and Nike, and got here up with consequences walking in thousands. This actually showed that human beings have been taking quite a few pics of manufacturers which the manufacturers could need to understand about. There inside the lay the validation and a huge possibility for gazeMetrix.
However, it became not smooth faucet this opportunity given their limited experience with ad generation. While they garnered publicity with their concept and were given featured in Forbes and Ad Age, and a variety of brands showed hobby in their product. However with no one within the crew having an revel in in advert-tech, aligning the product’s usefulness with the methods brands labored became now not smooth. Also, the product itself changed into now not nice-tuned sufficient. For it to become large, the team needed to apprehend how manufacturers labored. So the team commenced running closely with individuals who signed up on their site first of all, gradually honing the product and growing a proprietary virality detection approach.
The Contract And The Contact
The team’s first settlement finally materialized in 2014. It become a pilot from the biggest customer emblem in the global and similarly spearheaded their journey for extra reputation of their product. The company entered right into a contract model (fee over $1,000k) with the logo, but interestingly did no longer placed any cap on the range of users for the emblem. Deobrat factors out that it was the proper issue for them to do, given the truth that they desired more exposure. The extra wide variety of companies used their product, the less complicated it would grow to be for them to reach out different clients. Deobrat says, “It become the classic foot within the door technique.” And that is precisely what led them to Sysomos, whilst one of their companions delivered them to the Toronto-based totally social intelligence agency.
Sysomos is powered by means of information technology that gives agencies instantaneous context to the masses of millions of conversations going on online every day. Its flagship product, Media Analysis Platform (MAP), mines and analyses content material from social media to create a image of media coverage. It has extra than 1500 brands and organizations as its customers. So if Sysomos had get entry to to lots of information, gazeMetrix had just the right era to mine it. Their partnership become a natural one that might allow brands image tracking for pics across social media channels like Twitter and Instagram. As they started out working collectively in Feb 2015, it have become obtrusive that an alliance made greater feel.
And so it happened
However, all become not so clean as it regarded. Deobrat admits he had by no means offered a company earlier than so the challenge became complicated. To add to that, each the entities had one of a kind systems. While gazeMetrix had 3 workplaces inside the US, India and Switzerland, Sysomos had two in Canada and one within the US. Aligning most of these entities become a large undertaking. Deobrat mentions way to the attorneys on both aspects, all of the 4 teams have been subsequently able forge a component coins element fairness deal and finalise a structure! In addition to lawyers on each aspects, Microsoft Ventures and iSPIRT also helped the firm in getting the deal done. At the time of acquisition, the agency had nine personnel in general-8 in Bangalore and one within the US.
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Post the acquisition, gazeMetrix will operate as a separate enterprise unit under Sysomos and continue to broaden the product with get admission to to the large database of Sysomos. With this acquisition, Sysomos has launched a brand new product referred to as Sysomos Gaze with a view to provide manufacturers image monitoring for images across social media channels like Twitter and Instagram. It will even enable them to engage their fans and customers and alert them while any image related to their logo identification begins to move viral on social platforms. Sysomos now will be able to provide an integrated set of gear together with social and visible listening, network engagement, content curation and publishing to manufacturers.
In the pipeline, are announcements of any other product below the Sysomos emblem in a month or so and extra product integration to comply with in 2016. For now, Deobrat sounds contented. When asked if he in no way explored the idea of just elevating budget from Sysomos, he candidly admits, “We have been now not in a hurry to raise budget. And if you look at it, a strategic investment is what you call a behind schedule acquisition. Both the agencies had comparable visions. This acquisition was but herbal.” Given the manner how one aspect brought about every other inside the story of gazeMetrix, one is inclined to believe Deobrat!
Mukund Mohan has summed up gazeMetrix’s journey perfectly in his blog publish, “I am sure the journey changed into bittersweet, but definitely worth it. I am so glad for the crew.That’s the adventure an entrepreneur goes thru. Ups and downs, sideways and strolling in place. Some make it, a few don’t, however maximum could now not exchange their journey for another component.”