Dylan Collins’ SuperAwesome news: ‘Internet for kids’ venture raises $21m

1 Sep 2017179 Shares

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Entrepreneur and investor Dylan Collins. Image: Connor McKenna

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Tech entrepreneur Dylan Collins wants to build a zero-data internet for kids.

SuperAwesome, the kid-safe marketing platform led by Irish entrepreneur Dylan Collins, has raised $21m in a new funding round.

The investment was led by Mayfair Equity Partners.

‘The kids’ media market is the last to engage digital, so growth is phenomenal. Average industry digital growth is over 25pc but we have many clients who are increasing their digital spending by 100pc year on year’
– DYLAN COLLINS

SuperAwesome works with 200 global brands – including Disney, Lego, Mattel, Peppa Pig and Warner – to help them reach youth markets all over the world.

Earlier this year, we reported that the London-headquartered start-up is tipped for a potential IPO on the London Stock Exchange.

We also reported how Singapore-based TotallyAwesome – a joint venture between Dylan Collins’ SuperAwesome and Inspire Ventures – had raised $2m to build the largest kid-safe ad platform in Asia and Australia.

SuperAwesome will use the $21m fundraising to develop its offering and expand its operations across the world.

Digital to take a chunk out of TV in lucrative kid-safe marketing business

Collins is one of Ireland’s most successful entrepreneurs, embarking upon his start-up career while at Trinity College Dublin with Phorest, which is still in business today, and games middleware firm Demonware, which is also still active.

Activision acquired Demonware in 2007 for an estimated $15m.

SuperAwesome was established by Collins four years ago and reaches more than 400m users each month across mobile, web and online video, ensuring COPPA-compliant, kid-safe digital engagements across advertising, social, identity and content distribution.

Speaking with Siliconrepublic.com, Collins said that the children-based digital media market has grown from a few hundred million dollars, to be on track to hit more than $1bn by 2019, growing at a rate of 25pc per annum.

He said that the company is recording eight-figure revenues and is growing at just under 200pc annually.

“The company’s technology is now used by virtually every major brand and publisher in the kid space, and powering hundreds of millions of kid-safe digital engagements every month. We’re now 100-plus people in LA, New York City and London.”

Collins said that SuperAwesome is on top of two major trends in this space: the rapid growth of digital (“TV is still 85pc of the market but is rebalancing rapidly”), and the equally rapid growth of data privacy law to protect kids’ activity online, which is establishing new technology requirements for all the players in the ecosystem.

“Snapchat, Facebook et al are all age-13-plus platforms – they can’t be used by companies to engaged with the under-13 market. Instead, new platforms designed specifically for the safety requirements of kids like PopJam are becoming standard.”

Collins’ focus on the youth market is prescient. Earlier this week, research emerged from Cork Chamber Business School that showed Facebook’s audience is ageing while Snapchat is now the dominant social media platform for under-35s.

“The kids’ media market is the last to engage digital, so growth is phenomenal. Average industry digital growth is over 25pc but we have many clients who are increasing their digital spending by 100pc year on year,” said Collins.

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com