Seattle-based Ground Truth has merged with Boston-based Umber Systems to create a new company called Mobile Intelligence Solutions that will be based in New York and serve clients with detailed analysis about what’s happening in the wireless industry. As a result, the new company has scored $8 million in venture capital funding from North Bridge Venture Partners, Steamboat Ventures, Voyager Capital, Emergence Capital and OPENAIR Equity Partners.
Mobile Intelligence Solutions will be led by GroundTruth CEO Sterling Wilson, a former Qpass executive, who plans to relocate to New York in the next 30 to 60 days. The company will operate branch offices in Boston, Pune, India and Seattle where GroundTruth founder Michael “Luni” Libes will be based and serve as chief research officer. Umber founder Asa Kalavade will remain in Boston where she will serve as chief technology officer and vice president of engineering.
Evan Neufeld, vice president of marketing at Mobile Intelligence Solutions, said that the company chose New York as the new headquarters because of the proximity to both big customers and the Boston office where Umber has built a significant business providing industry research to wireless carriers.
As vice president of marketing at GroundTruth, Neufeld was already located in New York and he said the vast majority of the agencies and advertisers that the company sells to are based there. “It was just much better logic to have the company in New York,” said Neufeld.
Ground Truth and Umber both competed to sell their wireless industry research to big carriers, and Neufeld noted that Umber’s product was better received in part because it had about a 12 month head start. As part of the deal, GroundTruth will ditch its carrier intelligence business to focus on wireless industry market intelligence used by advertisers and agencies. Meanwhile, Umber will head up the carrier analytics business, which sells data to the likes of AT&T, Verizon and others.
“They were a little ahead of us,” said Neufeld, noting that the merger is a “win-win” for both companies.
Mergers of two rival companies can be complex, but Neufeld said that both companies realized pretty quickly that it was the right move.
GroundTruth raised a $7 million round of financing last year, bringing total financing to about $9.5 million.
Terms of the merger are not being disclosed. The combined company will have about 40 employees, Neufeld said.