Interactive display advertising company Spongecell completed another round of financing, although the amount was not disclosed. Eric Schmidt, Google's executive chairman, and Jim Pallotta, chairman and managing director of Raptor Group, led the round, and other participants include Brian Rooney, board member of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and SilverHaze Partners. Founding CEO Ben Kartzman says that the funds will be used to increase sales growth and support the product development team.
Spongecell last raised capital in 2007 from Halo Venture Partners, The Pilot Group, and SilverHaze Partners, after being incorporated in 2006. Reportedly supporting the creative resurgence in online display media, Spongecell uses API-enabled technology to create lightweight rich media ads. According to testing by IPG's Media Lab, API-enabled ads outperform static control ads, with 2.4%-11.9% improvement in engagement rates, and interaction rates that were two to eight times more frequent.