It’s often said that if you’re not on Facebook you don’t exist, so dominant in our social lives has the uber-social network become. Therefore, it wouldn’t be surprising to learn that businesses — big and small — may feel the same way. Hoping to cash in on the rise of Facebook advertising is Stockholm-based Qwaya, which offers a cloud-based tool for SMEs to create, publish and measure the effectiveness of Facebook ad campaigns.
The company recently closed $3 million in Series A funding from Zobito, the VC firm set up by the former team behind the enterprise software company Qliktech that IPO’ed in 2010 at a post-IPO valuation of $1 billion, and Swedish VC Industrifonden. Notably, this represents Zobito’s first investment since the fund was set up.
Qwaya says the new funding will be used for product development, and international expansion out of its Sweden base.
A Facebook “Preferred Marketing Developer” (under the social network’s PMD program), Qwaya offers a cloud-based tool for running Facebook ad campaigns, which it charges for at a “low fixed monthly cost” that, it claims, undercuts competing and more expensive offerings that target larger companies than the SMEs and agencies it aims to attract, and who charge a percentage of ad spend rather than a monthly subscription.
The idea being that by lowering the financial barriers to entry in terms of running effective and automated campaigns on Facebook, Qwaya is opening up Facebook advertising to a much larger market of advertisers, which is also where it sees opportunity.
On that note, the company claims customers in more than 90 countries and says it’s growing by 15% per month, as meaningless as that metric is in isolation.
Its competitors include the likes Alchemy Social, Social.com (Salesforce) and Adobe.
One of the ways it’s able to compete on cost, says Qwaya CEO and co-founder Fredrik Skantze, is by “automating everything we do”. This includes sales and customer service, which is certainly one way to scale. Meanwhile, for an enterprise software startup, Qwaya is definitely running pretty lean with 14 employees — though no doubt that will change now that it has cash in the bank and plans to accelerate growth, as they say in VC lingo.