Saturday, April 19, 2014

Apps Builder raises €1M($1.5M) in Series B funding from United Ventures

Milan, 17th April 2014 - AppsBuilder the new "all in one platform" to create, edit and distribute mobile apps at an affordable cost and without any programming knowledge, has raised €1M($1.5M) in Series B funding from United Ventures, first investment fund in Italy in the field of digital technologies, born in 2013 from the union of Annapurna Ventures, of Massimiliano Magrini and JV Capital of Paolo Gesess, to "shake up digital entrepreneurship by spotting and promoting disruptive innovations". The investment of United Ventures thus leads to € 2.5 million ($3.5M) the total funding received by the company from its founding in 2011. Indeed, it was in 2011 that Annapurna Ventures and The Net Value (startup incubator and Digital Media Nursery founded by Mario Mariani) joined the AppsBuilder project and supported it in the seeding phase and that, based on the company performance in its first year of operation, were able to convince the fund managers of Vertis Venture and Zernike Meta Ventures, to fund the innovative Milan-based startup with a capital injection amounting to  €1.5M ($2M), held back in October 2012.

The primary objective of this new injection of capital is the further acceleration of the growth in more competitive foreign markets. The company will focus also on the acquisition of new talent in the view of a strategic plan that aims to make the product highly competitive and achieve determined business goals by one of the most towing areas on global markets, especially by consolidating growth and business traction in both the UK and US markets. In addition to strengthening the brand positioning in international markets, the funding will allow AppsBuilder to strengthen the research and development, with the goal of expanding its portfolio of mobile products and services by 2015.

The Milan, Italy-based mobile publishing and distribution platform, founded in 2011 by Luigi Giglio and Daniele Pelleri  with an increase in turnover of 40% in the last six months, and about 1 million users in more than 70 countries around the world, is continuing its growth path and stands out as a strategic ally for SMEs and large enterprises that aim to build a strong presence on the mobile market to reach new customers through the apps. 
The growth of AppsBuilder on international markets is also due to the holistic approach to mobile services offered, which include mobile couponing, loyalty cards to increase customer loyalty; push notifications and pop-up promotions to communicate more effectively with their users; advanced analytics to track app's to track app's ratings and overall usage trends, geo-localized offers to target customers based on geographical location and in-app forms to collect users'feedback and generate new business contacts.

Massimiliano Magrini, Co-founder and Managing Partner of United Ventures has expressed great satisfaction with this new development: "United Ventures is excited to invest in such an innovative company led by an ambitious and highly qualified team. We are extremely confident in the growth potential of AppsBuilder and we expect extraordinary results for 2014 and for the future. "

Daniel Pelleri, Co-founder and CEO of AppsBuilder, describes this important moment of growth and development of its platform as follows: "AppsBuilder responds to the ever growing need of SMEs and large companies to build and promote a strong mobile presence. With our services we are able to assist companies in an efficient manner and at competitive costs at every stage of the process. Thanks to the funding and guidance of United Ventures now we aim to operate in global markets. "

In 2013, users of the application were more than half a million and a year later they are 800 thousand, with an average of nearly 7,400 apps created each month. The application is used in 70 countries and services are spread in six different languages

On AppsBuilder:
The AppsBuilder project began in 2010 and is the brainchild of two developers, Luigi Giglio and Daniele Pellerithat were still students of computer science at the Polytechnic of Turin acknowledged the mobile as the major technology shift of our times and decided to develop an intuitive app platform to create, edit and promote mobile apps with no programming skills at all, an application for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. An hybrid business model with advertising or without it but at a monthly cost. Before to finish their studies they started to test the software for smartphones and tablets. Their passion paved the way to entrepreneurship. Many companies ask nowadays for customized apps, perhaps because they want their brand on a store, or are interested in exploring other channels of innovation. They launched the digital workshop, just for fun: in a few weeks 2,000 people signed up. A group specializing in home automation, Creston Electronics, has mounted its application to merge the messages published on their online social network, such as Facebook and Twitter. The way to becoming entrepreneurs was short: the two students of the University of Piedmont showed the results to potential investors and received the support of Annapurna Ventures, a VC fund focusing on innovative startups in the digital space, founded by Massimiliano Magrini, former country manager of Google Italylead investor in the operation, and of Mario Mariani (The Net Value), who supported them in the seeding phase. Just five months after the official market launch (May 2011) the company reached 1M adv requests and sold ist first CMS (October 2011), followed by 2,000 apps sold in the stores as of November 2011 and 1,000,000 apps downloaded as of May 2012And it was based on this excellent results, that the two Business Angels of the Web, Massimiliano Magrini and Mario Mariani, were able to convince the fund managers of Vertis Venture and Zernike Meta Ventures, to fund the Startup with a capital injection amounting to  €1.5M ($2M), held back in October 2012.

The company mission is to innovate the mobile development industry, turning what is currently a time-consuming and skill-requiring process into a simplified practice. Thanks to a wide range of promotional and CRM tools, we aim at helping professionals and small businesses build their mobile presence, assisting them throughout all the stages, from developing an app to marketing their products and services among their mobile audience.

on United Ventures
United Ventures is the new VC fund  founded by Massimiliano Magrini and Paolo Gesess, founders of JV Capital and Annapurna Ventures respectively. Sponsor of the initiative was the Italian Fund of Investment which put 10 million at disposal of United Ventures in the first closing which reach €30 million of raised funds. The fund has a final target of €50 million.

The team of United Ventures is formed by professional who have a deep knowledge of the digital space, such as Mario Mariani (partner of Annapurna Ventures and founder of The Net Value) and Sergio Zocchi (partner of Jupiter Ventures). Starting from the vehicle JV2 Capital, the team has promoted the broadening of the investor base allowing the birth of United Ventures, which set itself as reference operator in the italian context. The investor base sees the participation, beyond the Italian Investment Fund, of other institutional funds - such as Fondazione Banco di Sardegna, Foundation Savings Bank of Lucca, Banca Sella and Banca Patrimoni) and of private investors at the side of the management team, such as Matteo Fago, co-founder of VenereMarco Corradino co-founder of VolagratisEdoardo Loewenthal of 6SicuroValerio De Molli of the European House Ambrosetti and Davide Serra of Algebris Investments