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Turn Raises $80 Million in Funding Round Led by BlackRock

Jan. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Turn Inc., whose software helps companies plan digital and mobile advertising campaigns, raised $80 million in a funding round led by BlackRock Inc., the world’s largest asset manager.

The new investment brings the company’s total fundraising to $135 million, Chief Executive Officer Bill Demas said in a telephone interview. The company, based in Redwood City, California, ended 2013 with positive earnings before interest, depreciation and amortization for a third straight year, while staff grew to 350 employees, he said.

Turn’s technology helps advertisers improve the targeting of their marketing messages and analyze data from their campaigns on digital and mobile platforms. It competes with Internet and media companies such as Google Inc. and Nielsen Holdings NV -- two rivals with whom it also has partnerships, Demas said.

“We will continue to invest in the core business to deliver the right ad at the right time to the right person and will expand farther in video, mobile and social,” Demas said. He declined to provide a valuation. Turn, which has offices on five continents “will continue expanding globally, mostly in Brazil and Japan, a relatively new market,” he said.

The startup’s new investors include ClearBridge Investments LLC, Firsthand Technology Value Fund Inc., Northport Investment Management LLC and Pine River Capital Management LP, he said. Fidelity Investments is also among Turn’s new funders, according to a person with knowledge of the financing round. Fidelity declined to comment.

Existing investors such as Norwest Venture Partners, Trident Capital, Shasta Ventures Management LLC and Focus Ventures Ltd. also participated in the latest round.

“Turn now has enough of a global footprint that it can help advertisers solve a lot of problems,” said Kevin Landis, CEO of Firsthand, which also invested in TapAd Inc., another advertising-technology company.

To contact the reporter on this story: Serena Saitto in New York at ssaitto@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Pui-Wing Tam at ptam13@bloomberg.net

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