Alibaba invests in PlaceIQ – location-based targeting start-up

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Alibaba the largest online commerce company in the world has invested in PlaceIQ. The companies did not disclose the value of the deal.

PlaceIQ build its business based on understanding the spatial behaviour of customers. Where you go says a lot about who you are and what you’re going to do next. The company receives location data about users from brands (most users allow access to when they download and install free mobile apps) and analyses it applying its proprietary location-based analytics platform. This gives marketers a unique insight about behavioural patterns of their customers.

The investment means that Alibaba is searching for a way to improve its user targeting and better understand customers. Although the company is mostly known for its online business it actually gets most of its traffic from the mobile app. Alibaba also owns Chinese equivalents of Twitter and YouTube among other businesses.

This sounds like a lot of location-based data that could give some insights for optimizing ad targeting and improving User Experience. For PlaceIQ the deal means an access to a massive Chinese and global markets. Alibaba has almost 5 billion users worldwide. The scale is really amazing. Well done PlaceIQ!

Aleks Buczkowski

I’m a professional always thinking outside the box and a self-confessed gadget addict. As a son of a professor of cartography I was surrounded by maps all my life and as a result spatial way of thinking and seeing reality is naturally embedded in who I am.