Tokyo-Based Phybbit, Ltd., Secures $2.9 Million Series A Funding

Phybbit's Flagship Product is "SpiderAF," a Powerful Fraud Prevention Tool for the Online Advertising Industry

Tokyo-based Phybbit, Ltd., has announced it has raised 320 million yen (USD $2.9 million) in its Series A funding round. Primary investors include Mitsubishi UFJ Capital (MUCAP), Nippon Venture Capital (NVCC), Accord Ventures, Darwin Ventures, as well as individual investment from Satoshi Nakajima the founder of Swipe, Inc., and Xevo, Inc. The company will use this funding to boost marketing as well as personnel recruitment efforts with the goal of expanding its customer base globally. Phybbit is the developer of SpiderAF, a powerful AI-driven tool that can detect online advertising fraud such as fake impressions, clicks, and conversions to reduce advertising budget waste and boost ROI.

Phybbit was founded in 2011 by Satoko Ohtsuki and currently consists of a team of 25 members, with 25% from countries outside of Japan. Its SpiderAF is an easy to use fraud prevention tool powered by AI with a focus on automation and information dissemination. SpiderAF supports all ad formats including banner ads, mobile ads, affiliate ads, and listing ads. Current clients include Japanese ad networks, agencies, and advertisers, but also has future plans for broader applications and worldwide expansion. In December 2018, the company created Japan’s first multi-business “Shared Blacklist” (SBL), a consolidated database of ad fraud information shared among companies, and services in an effort to unify the entire advertising industry against fraudulent activities. Juniper Research has estimated that in 2018 fraud cost advertisers $19 billion worldwide. This is projected to reach $44 billion by 2022. Phybbit also published a whitepaper which reported that from January to June of 2019, its own software estimated fraud impact on Japanese companies to be USD $13 million.

“I would like to express my thanks and gratitude to all of the investors who share the same vision with Phybbit and myself,” said Phybbit, Ltd., Founder and CEO Satoko Ohtsuki. “We promise to deliver the best results to everyone in the spirit of ‘akiramenai’ or ‘not giving up’ which we have cultivated through long-term contract development.  Utilizing this funding, we aim to raise awareness in the Japanese market and strengthen sales in the U.S. and Korean markets by hiring additional sales and marketing professionals.”

“With the frequency of ad fraud steadily rising over the years and the need to develop countermeasures against it, I expect robust growth from Phybbit in the near future thanks to their advanced technology and accumulated data,” said Junichi Taguchi, Investment Director for Mitsubishi UFJ Capital Co. “Additionally, I think that there is a high chance that this cultivated research and understanding into fraudulent techniques can also be applicable to other areas of cyber security. Ultimately, all these factors lead to our decision to invest into Phybbit.”

As a working mother herself, Satoko Ohtsuki understands the demands of both family and career. Consequently, Phybbit puts a premium on promoting a healthy work-life integration for its employees. It is a 2019 recipient of the “Omotenashi Japan Service Quality Certification” which guarantees a comfortable working environment and services regardless of nationality, and they are scheduled to receive the “Kurumin Certificate” by the Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare as an accredited childcare support company at the end of January 2020.

“Work-life integration is a work style that blends an individual’s work and private lives at a flexible and high level – enriching both in the process,” said Ohtsuki. “As a result, synergies such as an individual’s productivity and self-growth can be realized, which improves their quality of life, their sense of accomplishment and happiness while also benefitting the company and quality of work. I would like to create an environment where people from all walks of life can work easily. For those who are interested, please contact us.”

Some of Phybbit’s work-life policies include adopting flextime and reducing working hours while tailoring them to the individual’s natural cycle; providing free gym membership, and encouraging workers to exercise or take a nap when needed; providing paid childcare leave for both mothers and fathers; inviting family members to visit the office anytime and participate in social activities and providing vacation time in accordance with the employee’s home country, not just Japanese holidays.

About Phybbit, Ltd.

Phybbit is the developer and provider of the automated, AI-driven fraud prevention tool, SpiderAF. Phybbit’s team of data scientists are working to help fight the ever-evolving issue of ad fraud. Founded on the belief that happiness of each team member must be realized to fully support the company, Phybbit is committed to creating a “work-life integration” corporate environment that allows people to live their lives in their own way by promoting more flexible work lifestyles.​

Source: Phybbit, Ltd.

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Categories: Fund Raising

Tags: Ad fraud, Digital advertising, fundraising, Japan, Phybbit, SpiderAF, startup


About Phybbit Ltd.

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Phybbit is the developer and provider of the fraud protection tool, SpiderAF. For the constantly evolving ad fraud industry, Phybbit incorporates the help and consultation of data scientists.

Phybbit Ltd.
4-22-12, Nishiazabu (BIS 4F)
MINATO, TOKYO JAPAN
Japan