The leader in podcast infrastructure, advertising and data analytics reports a banner year for product development and growth, with additional funding closed
AUSTIN, Texas – January 19, 2021 – Backtracks, the leading technology infrastructure platform for end-to-end podcast management, advertising and data analytics, is pleased to announce an unprecedented year in product expansion, bolstered by a previously undisclosed new round of funding closed in June 2020, further fueling the company’s momentum in innovating the new technologies that will define the future of the podcasting industry.
In the last year, Backtracks has launched a suite of new products that enhance the ability of publishers and advertisers to understand and reach audiences with next level analytics and machine learning-based capabilities, accelerated user adoption and partner acquisition, and closed an investor-initiated Pre-Series A funding round in the amount of $1.6M USD.
“We are building the infrastructure of podcasting,” said Jonathan Gill, CEO and founder, Backtracks. “Our robust analytics engine provides an unprecedented level of insight into audio and listener behavior, connecting the best content with the best ads while preserving our audiences’ data privacy and providing a best in breed user experience. This recent round of funding underscores investor confidence in our model and market validation during a time of uncertainty. We’re continuing to innovate our platform and product lines and are looking forward to announcing exciting upcoming releases and continuing to further growth in 2021 and beyond.”
Investor Confidence During Times of Uncertainty
Despite the myriad of challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Backtracks has continued to advance and disrupt the podcasting industry through its technology development and product releases this year. An unexpected infusion of confidence also came through an investor-instigated funding round of $1.6M USD in June of 2020, a time of frozen funds in the VC landscape.
“Backtracks is clearly differentiating itself as the only technology provider that offers a turnkey platform for managing, measuring and monetizing a podcast ecosystem,” said Kelly Perdew, lead investor and Managing General Partner, Moonshots Capital. “Like the Stripe of podcasting, Backtracks is ushering in a new era to the market with the breadth and depth of their technologies. We recognized their potential early on with the initial funding round and have seen the breakneck pace of new technology development as a result, so that led us to participate in an additional oversubscribed round recently targeted at further fueling this momentum. Backtracks’ offerings and product releases on the horizon will quickly distinguish them as the leading technology platform for end-to-end management of podcasting.”
Investors in this most recent round of funding include: Moonshots Capital; KLI Capital; Bull Creek Capital; Sputnik ATX; Bench Management; Ross Hoffman, former Chief Business Officer at Headspace and former VP of Partnerships at Twitter; and, Vivek Garipalli, co-founder and CEO, Clover Health, among others. Backtracks previously closed its first seed round of funding of $2.1M in May 2019, led by Moonshots Capital.
Innovation Throughout the Podcast Ecosystem
In 2020, Backtracks also announced a new suite of publisher tools that introduced enhanced tracking, transparency and measurement to podcasting with standardized and verified metrics across any app, host and device.
Key features of that update included the most advanced podcast analytics available to publishers to date, allowing content creators to see verified data around who is listening to their content, segments that were listened to and skipped, and on what device.
This year’s product innovations included:
- Backtracks Switchboard® gives publishers deep analytics and control of their data with the ability to change hosting providers any time, for any reason.
- Backtracks Charts allows publishers, advertisers, and listeners to search by specific topic across 26 million+ episodes and over 800,000 podcasts and explore the ecosystem-wide knowledge graph of podcasting.
- Backtracks Player enhancements to enable content creators to customize the player to fit any brand and style guidelines, with the ability to embed anywhere, as well as additional audience engagement features to enhance the marketing capabilities of their audio.
Backtracks will continue to invest heavily in further development of existing and new product offerings and its infrastructure platform, to help podcasters and audio partners around the world measure, monetize, and advertise in audio and podcasting.
Partner Scale Out and Expansion of Enterprise Capabilities
Partners are recognizing the value of Backtracks’ innovative technology solutions. The company’s reputation for delivering results that provide business value for publishers and advertisers, and enhancing the listening experience for consumers, has seen marked validation in its scaled adoption this year.
Backtracks has processed more than 40 billion minutes of audio and empowers thousands of podcasts and audio partners, including McKinsey & Company, Stratfor, SamsungNEXT, Mediahuis, The Memphis Grizzlies, Y Combinator, NASA, and several NPR entities, affiliates, and shows, including Money 20/20, KQED and KUT to manage and monetize their audio content.
“I live on Backtracks,” said Emily Donahue, Head of Public Relations at Stratfor. “ When I joined Stratfor, ramping up our podcasting was a top priority. We had some really great information that wasn’t being delivered for the general public and it presented a huge brand building opportunity. Since partnering with Backtracks, we’ve grown our audience 300% year over year, with zero paid marketing efforts. The platform shows me which content resonates with individual listeners, which content has life over time, which content resonates in which areas of the world, and more. Using the information we’re learning from Backtracks has enabled us to build the audience, and the bigger the audience, the better for business, as it means more people understanding our brand and who we are.”
For more information, visit backtracks.fm.
Backtracks, Inc. is a podcast data analytics and advertising platform based in Austin, Texas. Founded in 2016 by engineers Jonathan Gill and Kevin Wright, Backtracks is on a mission to modernize the podcast medium by providing podcasters and advertisers with the tools to measure, discover and monetize their content and data. Backtracks recognizes that in every medium a player comes along that fundamentally changes the way key actors in the space interact with each other and like Google and Facebook for display ads or Nielsen for TV, Backtracks goal is to be that catalyzing force to help podcasting reach its full potential.