Network xAd Raises $9M, Will Challenge AT&T for Local-Mobile Ad Crown

Local-mobile ad network xAd has announced a new $9 million round of funding. The money comes from Emergence Capital Partners, SoftBank Capital and Palisades Ventures and Silicon Valley Bank. Roughly a year ago xAd raised about $4 million from Emergence Capital.

The company supports search, display and pay-per-call advertising. It also owns the Go2 mobile directory properties.

xAd says it's the "largest mobile-local advertising network in the U.S." Recently AT&T has laid claim to that crown saying it serves a billion mobile ad impressions monthly. AT&T offers mobile display ads, while xAd has text-based search ads as well. In May xAd announced that it had served more than 2 billion ads. 

In November, xAd reported 10 billion monthly ad impressions and 90 million monthly local-search requests. 

While ad networks such as Jumptap, Millennial, InMobi and AdMob all offer geotargeted ad inventory (to varying degrees of geo), xAd and AT&T specialize in locally relevant advertising. AT&T contends its ads deliver a much higher CPM than "remnant" ad networks. Previously xAd said that it can deliver a $30 CPM to publishers (not all inventory). 

In addition to xAd and AT&T, there are other local-mobile ad networks (mostly display):

  • LSN Mobile
  • Verve Wireless
  • Where.com
  • Marchex (PPCall) 
  • Chitika
  • CityGrid
  • Navteq
  • JiWire

xAd both aggregates third party (e.g., yellow pages) advertiser inventory and sells directly to national and local businesses. In September xAd said that it had 1.2 million advertisers in its network, which represented "about 30% to 40% of [total] local mobile search traffic and reach" in the US.