Jul 25, 2022 - Economy

Exclusive: Chartbeat bought by Cuadrilla Capital

Chartbeat CEO John Saroff. Photo: Monica Schipper/Getty Images

Chartbeat, a content insights platform that's used by web publishers to measure and analyze traffic, was purchased by Cuadrilla Capital, an investment firm focused on enterprise software businesses, Chartbeat CEO John Saroff told Axios.

Why it matters: The deal will give Chartbeat the capital it needs to scale its business beyond providing traffic analytics for publishers on the editorial side.

  • Chartbeat's long-term vision is to build a suite of products that help media companies grow their businesses, in addition to helping shape their editorial strategies.
  • "As more and more folks get focused on subscriptions and long-term value, I think Chartbeat becomes a product that adds value beyond what it's being used for today," Saroff said.

Details: All of Chartbeat's 60 employees will stay with the company after the deal, including Chartbeat's management team.

  • While exact deal terms aren't being disclosed, the company's management is incentivized to stay on as part of the deal.
  • The company is being fully acquired but will continue to operate independently. "It's kind of like growth equity plus," Saroff said of the deal.

By the numbers: Chartbeat became profitable in the back half of 2019 and has seen steady growth since, Saroff said. The company brings in mid-eight figures in revenue annually.

  • The company works with around 600 clients across 71 countries. Those companies represent tens of thousands of sites.
  • The vast majority (90%) of Chartbeat's revenue comes from large enterprise media companies.

Catch up quick: Chartbeat was launched in 2009 via Betaworks, a startup incubator and investment firm, as a real-time analytics company that could provide publishers with 24/7 insights about their traffic.

  • At the time, most publishers relied on Google Analytics for traffic insights, and web analytics weren't as sophisticated.
  • Chartbeat has raised $31 million total over the past 12 years across three separate financing rounds. It last raised equity in 2015. It raised $7 million in debt in 2018 from North Atlantic Capital.
  • Notable Chartbeat investors include Index Ventures, which led its $3 million series A round in 2010 and co-led its $9.5 million Series B round in 2012; Draper Fisher Jurvetson, which co-led its Series B round; and Harmony Partners, which led its Series C round in 2015.
  • Like most tech firms incubated within Betaworks, Chartbeat eventually spun out of the incubator when it raised its Series A round in 2010.

The big picture: As more publishers pivot their businesses towards digital engagement and revenue, firms that offer ways to measure and analyze their traffic and advertising capabilities have become a hot commodity.

  • DoubleVerify, a company that measures fraud and viewability, went public last year, as did Israeli digital intelligence firm, SimilarWeb.
Go deeper