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GenAI in advertising: The Brandtech Group snaps $115M funding, hits $4B valuation

The Brandtech Group
Picture credits: The Brandtech Group

The GenAI boom is here now officially! And its just the beginning. 

New York-based The Brandtech Group, a digital-only marketing group and a generative AI marketing company, has secured a $115 million Series C funding round. The investment came from new investors – Fimalac and NendoLabs and existing investors – Mousse Partners and Bansk Group. 

In addition to the investment, The Brandtech Group has appointed Matthieu Bucaille, ex-CEO of Lazard International as its Global Chief Financial Officer.

Valued at $4 billion with this round, the company will use the investment to disrupt the traditional advertising industry with AI to create marketing campaigns.

GenAI-powered marketing tech

Founded by David Jones in 2015 as You & Mr Jones, works with the mission to help brands do their marketing better, faster, and cheaper using technology. 

Recently the company acquired Pencil, its genAI-powered marketing platform. It is touted that Pencil’s ads are 10x faster, with 2x better performance than a brand’s usual baseline. Post the acquisition, Pencil launched a new tool, Pencil Pro, which is designed for major global brands. 

Its clients include Google, Microsoft, Unilever, LVMH, Morgan Stanley, Bayer, TikTok, Diageo, Reckitt and Renault-Nissan.

Incoming Brandtech Group CFO Matthieu Bucaille said: “David presented the original Brandtech deck to me in 2015 and told me how artificial intelligence and technology was going to change marketing beyond all belief – it’s been remarkable to watch that happen, despite so many people dismissing it at the time, and to see how they have built the #1 Gen AI marketing group in the world. The opportunity to join this adventure is particularly exciting at a time when you realise how challenged the old legacy ad business model is going to be and how perfect Brandtech’s timing and model are in comparison. I relish partnering with David, Jean-Marc, and the Brandtech team to play a key role in marketing disruption.”

Brandtech Group Founder and CEO David Jones added: “When OpenAI founder Sam Altman provocatively said, “AI Will Handle “95%” of Marketing Work Done by Agencies and Creatives,” the traditional legacy industry was up in arms. We, on the other hand, said: “That’s exactly why we built the Brandtech Group.” The mobile phone made everyone a creator – gen AI makes everyone an ad agency – that may not be very good news for traditional legacy agencies with 100,000 employees. Still, it’s going to be great for the world of marketing in general. Gen AI is going to profoundly change, not just every aspect of marketing, but the whole of business. I couldn’t be more excited to have Matthieu join and partner with me to accelerate our lead in the gen AI marketing space. It’s going to be a wild few years! Jean-Marc has been the most incredible co-founder, I’d like to thank him for his immense contribution.” 

Brandtech Partner and Head of Emerging Technologies Rebecca Sykes added: “We’re seeing incredible momentum as our large enterprise clients move into a phase of real, practical adoption of Gen AI, revolutionising some of the most painful aspects of marketing quickly, relevantly and at unprecedented scale. Part of our approach has been in helping clients overcome their fears and embrace the space safely, through sharing our knowledge amassed since 2018; our legal/ethical frameworks; negotiating best-in-market terms with all the leading foundation models as well as demonstrating technical mitigations built into our own tool, Pencil.”

Outgoing Global CFO Jean-Marc Antoni said: “I am very proud of what we have achieved so far – it has been a truly remarkable and exciting journey to date building Brandtech. I am happy to hand over my Global CFO position to Matthieu, who brings the right skill set for the next growth stage which will be built on Gen AI. I will of course remain a Founding Partner forever and will continue to support Brandtech as much as needed.”

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