Vancouver-based Visual Marketing Platform Developer Later Merges with Boston's Mavrck, Combined Entity Receives $135 Million Strategic InvestmentThursday, April 28, 2022
Leading Influencer and Social Platforms Mavrck and Later Unite to Solve Measurement and Monetization for the Creator Economy
Vancouver, BC, April 28, 2022--(T-Net)--Mavrck, a leading influencer marketing platform for enterprise consumer brands, today announced it will join forces with Vancouver-based Later, a leading social media marketing and commerce platform for small business owners and creators.
The combination was funded with a $135 million strategic investment by global growth equity investor Summit Partners and represents a follow-on to the firm's December 2021 $120 million investment in Mavrck.
Later will continue to operate as a standalone product and business unit, while working together with Mavrck to solve creator measurement and monetization at scale, to better serve both sides of the ecosystem — brands and creators.
The Mavrck and Later technologies are positioned to capitalize on significant opportunities including social commerce and creator-based marketing through relationship management with brands of all sizes and creators of all types.
Later Co-Founder and President, Roger Patterson (left) and Mavrck Co-Founder and CEO, Lyle Stevens (right). Photo credit: Eric Wong
Providing More Meaningful Measurement of Business Impact
The influencer marketing industry is growing quickly — at an estimated CAGR of 30% — and is expected to reach $85 billion in spend by 2028, according to Research and Markets; however, the lack of sophisticated social analytics remains a critical pain point within the global creator economy. Meaningful measurement is frequently cited as one of the most pressing challenges for enterprise brand influencer marketers, who have largely relied on metrics such as views and engagements as a proxy for success. More meaningful bottom-of-the-funnel metrics tied to business outcomes and ROI remain elusive, but are critical to proving the value of creator partnerships in a brand's marketing mix. The benefit extends to creators as well; with the support of data-driven insights, creators can improve their monetization and collaboration opportunities with leading global brands.
"Creators add tremendous value to brands, but the ability to measure that value remains a challenge - creating tension between brands and the creators with whom they collaborate. Together, Mavrck and Later are committed to building an ecosystem of trust between marketers and creators — powered by proprietary data and designed to add transparency to the compensation process and fuel the growth of the creator middle class," said Lyle Stevens, Co-Founder and CEO of Mavrck.
"Specifically, incorporating Later's social insights into the Mavrck platform will help brands search for creators based on historic traffic generated by Later's link-in-bio solution and, in turn, help drive a better brand fit. Creators become more desirable to brands when they've demonstrated an ability to convert consumers to action, improving their likelihood to monetize and collaborate with leading global brands."
Since its launch in 2016, Later's link-in-bio feature, one of the first Instagram bio link tools of its kind, has generated over 2 billion pageviews for users worldwide, capturing valuable insights on the social profiles and content that drive traffic.
Almost 7 million creators and small business owners use Later's suite of social media tools to visually plan and schedule social content, drive traffic, and increase their sales. With this unique technology, coupled with providing free educational resources and content to their customer base, Later has helped millions of small business owners and creators grow their brands and businesses online. This investment follows a period of substantial revenue growth for Later and will help to further accelerate growth by expanding its business solutions for small businesses and creators.
"We've built a phenomenal platform designed to help small businesses and entrepreneurs to manage their digital marketing, commerce, and customer relationships all in one place. Our notable scale is a result of the commitment we've placed on our role within that ecosystem," said Roger Patterson, Co-Founder and CEO of Later. "Later's leading technology paired with Mavrck's enterprise social proof platform will expand on that value even further. Together we'll nurture a symbiotic relationship between creators and brands, helping both to drive meaningful results to grow their businesses."
Reaching Consumers, Driving Revenue for Enterprise Brands
Since 2020, the average brand spend on the Mavrck platform has increased by 114 percent, a testament to the explosive growth of the influencer marketing industry, as people have turned to content creation as a secondary or primary source of income. Mavrck aims to help that rapidly growing creator class — an estimated 50 million people worldwide according to eMarketer — to better monetize their creative passions by connecting them with brands to deliver content people trust. Today, more than 5,000 marketing professionals at more than 500 global consumer brands rely on Mavrck's technology to more effectively access and manage relationships with content creators. Since 2014, Mavrck has activated more than 3 million creators and paid more than $200 million in incentives. Mavrck's petabytes of historical data from years of creator activations coupled with Later's proprietary data will support and accelerate the platforms' machine learning advancements and other product innovations.
"Together, we believe Later and Mavrck can empower both sides of this ecosystem - content creators and the brands that seek to harness their influence - with solutions and at a scale not yet seen in the creator economy," said Michael Medici, Managing Director at Summit Partners. "We look forward to working with Lyle, Roger and the entire team in their mission to solve a significant industry pain point for creators and marketers - and ultimately drive better business outcomes for both."
Stevens will lead a new senior leadership team comprised of leaders from both companies: Patterson will oversee the Later business unit as President and join the Board of Directors; Smith Anderson, Mavrck's Chief Customer Officer will become President of Mavrck's enterprise-focused business unit; and Robin de Pelham, Later's VP of People and Places is joining as Chief People Officer. Also joining the senior leadership team is Ian MacKinnon, Later's Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer and Sean Naegeli, Mavrck's Co-Founder and Chief Creator Officer.
The transaction closed in April 2022. Later was represented by Aqua Mergers & Acquisitions, and Mavrck was represented by Goodwin.
Mavrck is the all-in-one, advanced influencer marketing platform enabling global consumer brands to harness the power of social proof that consumers trust today. Marketers use Mavrck to discover and collaborate with influencers, advocates, referrers, and loyalists to create trusted content and insights for customer journey touchpoints at scale. Using its self-service influencer manager, Mavrck allows marketers to take an automated and performance-based approach to influencer marketing.
Founded in 2014, Mavrck has offices in Boston and Denver. Mavrck's platform has been recognized for its superior offering by the Shorty Awards and Retail TouchPoints' Retail Innovator Awards, honored as "Best Influencer Marketing Platform" by Digiday, is the #1 influencer marketing platform for the enterprise on software review site G2, and was named to the 2019 and 2020 Inc. 5000. Mavrck was also named a "Leader" among the top influencer marketing platforms in Forrester's evaluation, The Forrester New Wave: Influencer Marketing Solutions, Q2 2020.
Later is the leading social media marketing and commerce platform that helps small business owners and creators grow their brands and businesses online. With a unique combination of tools, machine-learning-based recommendations, and education, Later makes it easy to visually plan & schedule social content, drive traffic, and increase sales - empowering customers to turn their passions into possibilities.
Proudly based in Vancouver, BC, Later started at a hackathon in late 2013. Six months later, Latergramme launched to almost 20,000 people waiting to use the first version. The Later web and iOS mobile app were launched in May of 2014. Shortly after, Later launched an Android mobile app and continued the journey into the visual content marketing space.
Profitable and debt-free, Later has become the pioneer for visual marketing in the social and digital age, operating at the intersection of content, social, and commerce. Maintaining its market lead and independence, the company is now the leading visual marketing platform for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, and Pinterest in the world with over six million users, and in 2021 was ranked #18 in Canada in Deloitte's Fast 50 list, #119 in North America, and placed 51st in the Globe and Mail's Fastest Growing Companies list.
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