He's helping marketers personalize online shopping

MICHAEL HINKELMAN / DAILY NEWS STAFF Monetate co-founder and CEO David Brussin at his Conshohocken offices. His business recently opened a location in London, but he says he can't see Monetate ever leaving the Philadelphia area.
MICHAEL HINKELMAN / DAILY NEWS STAFF Monetate co-founder and CEO David Brussin at his Conshohocken offices. His business recently opened a location in London, but he says he can't see Monetate ever leaving the Philadelphia area.
Posted: November 12, 2013

D AVID BRUSSIN, 38, of Berwyn, is co-founder and CEO of Monetate, an e-commerce company in Conshohocken that he started with co-founder and chairman David Bookspan in January 2008. The company, which opened an office in London in June, helps online marketers leverage big data to create more personalized and engaging online customer experiences. Monetate hopes to employ more than 225 people by year end.

Q: How did you come up with the idea for Monetate?

A: As the Internet evolved, there was excitement about how digital would change marketing. If you interact with a customer online, you can pay attention to everything about the relationship and create a unique experience. That idea led to Monetate.

Q: How's the biz model work?

A: We are a software-as-a-service business. Our clients pay us on the basis of how busy their website is or how much they're interacting with customers.

Q: Who are your clients?

A: Brands like Best Buy and Brooks Brothers and some local brands like QVC and Revzilla.

Q: How did you get the business off the ground in 2008?

A: We started in First Round Capital's offices [the venture-capital fund begun by Josh Kopelman]. They were lead investor. Ben Franklin [Technology Partners] and Robin Hood Ventures got involved, and later we added Floodgate Fund and OpenView Venture Partners .

Q: What's the opportunity?

A: The opportunity is for marketers to stop treating consumers as if they're all alike. If you give them an effective, relevant [online] experience, they spend more and spend more often.

Q: With whom do you compete, and what differentiates you?

A: We compete with Adobe, IBM, Oracle. They take a different approach - they sell one product to a marketer, one to the IT group and one to analytics. All those groups have to talk to teach other, and once in a while the stars align. We create software that allows digital marketers to move faster and smarter, by anticipating and reacting to customer behavior in real time through one seamless interface.

Q: How much do services cost?

A: Our fee is based on how busy a client's website is and how often they interact with customers. A small client might be $75,000 a year. A large client - millions of customers - might be more than $1 million in fees annually.

Q: Your biggest challenge?

A: Growing the team; we're picky about whom we choose.

Q: How big a business is this?

A: I can say this: About one in four dollars spent online in the U.S. is going across our platform.

Q: Where's Monetate headed?

A: In a couple of years, we'll be a public company and a lot larger. We want to be here. I can't even imagine this company not being in Philadelphia.


" @MHinkelman

Online: ph.ly/YourBusiness

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