Exclusive: Google Offers Exec Eric Rosenblum Leaves for Mobile Ad Start-Up

Eric Rosenblum, the director of product for Google Offers, has left the Groupon competitor to join Drawbridge, a mobile advertising start-up.

In an interview, Rosenblum said that today was his first day at Drawbridge after working at Google for four and a half years.

In his new role as Drawbridge’s VP of Product, Rosenblum will be responsible for overseeing the company’s technology, which enables marketers to target users as they move from their computers to tablets and to mobile phones.

“Mobile is gaining share of minutes, so at some point it has to gain share of dollars,” Rosenblum said.

The company is trying to solve a problem, he said, that he was familiar with at Google. Google Offers sells discounts to consumers on everyday items, such as spa services or meals at restaurants, similar to Groupon. However, Google’s offering is slightly different because it is designed to help Google close the loop, so that it can show how online behavior — including Web searches — is dictating offline purchasing behavior. A key component of that is Google’s payment platform, called Google Wallet, which has struggled to gain consumer adoption.

While several members of the Google Wallet team have left, Google Offers has been more stable, even considering Rosenblum’s exit.

Rosenblum says his departure is not a reflection of the division’s success. “We’ve always positioned Google Offers as not competing directly with Groupon. We’ve built it as a closed loop ad platform,” he said. “I think we were wise to take a different tack and spend our engineering resources on that tack. Most small advertisers want to pay on CPA (cost per acquisition) basis, and I’m pretty proud that it’s as far along as it is.”

In May, Rosenblum announced that Google had started to integrate Groupon-like offers into Google Maps and that it was trying out other advertising models for coupons and rewards programs.

Now at Drawbridge, he said, he can help even small companies that don’t have Google-size resources increase revenue from mobile advertising by increasing their targeting abilities. The San Mateo, Calif.-based company is about two years old and has 21 employees. In May, Drawbridge’s founder and former Admob engineer Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan raised $6.5 million from Sequoia Capital and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byer.

Here’s the full release:

Eric Rosenblum, Former Google Director of Product, Joins Cross-Screen Advertising Startup Drawbridge

Mobile payments expert to lead product innovation for Drawbridge’s cross-screen advertising platform

SAN MATEO, Calif. – September 10, 2012 – Drawbridge, the leader in cross-screen mobile advertising, today announces its new VP of Product: Eric Rosenblum, former Google Offers Director of Product. Rosenblum brings over 16 years of experience in product innovation, mobile payments and entrepreneurial ventures and will be responsible for driving forward product development plans for Drawbridge’s cross-screen mobile ad platform.

Rosenblum spent over four years at Google as Director of Strategy and Operations and Director of Product. Prior to joining Google, Rosenblum was founder and CEO of Smartpay, a leading mobile payment company in China. He also served as GM of Greater China and Global Strategy GM for RealNetworks. Rosenblum started his career with the Boston Consulting Group in Hong Kong and Shanghai after receiving an MBA from MIT Sloan.

“Drawbridge’s opportunity is immense,” says Rosenblum. “10% of media time is now consumed on mobile, but mobile only attracts 1% of the ad spend. The team at Drawbridge has made tremendous progress developing the tools to close this gap and building the technology foundations to finally make targeting and attribution work across all mobile screens and devices. I am beyond excited to be joining this outstanding team for the challenge.”

Drawbridge has developed technology that is able to leverage targeting data across screens and across devices. Through Drawbridge’s sophisticated probabilistic and statistical inference models, brands get a unified view of their customers regardless of channel, screen, or device. Since launching in May, Drawbridge has onboarded major advertisers focused on driving cross-screen performance in the retail, travel, and entertainment verticals. Drawbridge has made its innovative platform publicly available to advertisers and publisher partners, who can sign up at www.drawbrid.ge.

Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan, Drawbridge founder and former AdMob and Google scientist, leads the company with funding from premier venture capitalists Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital.

To learn more about Drawbridge or sign up for their service, visit: www.drawbrid.ge

About Drawbridge
Drawbridge developed the world’s first cross-screen ad technology, enabling marketers to reach their target audience across any screen and any device – smartphone, tablet or personal computer. Unlike web cookies or fingerprint-based solutions, Drawbridge leverages anonymous, non-personally identifiable information to serve ads to hundreds of millions of unique users around the world – regardless of what kind of device they happen to be using. Drawbridge is located in Silicon Valley and is backed by Sequoia Capital and Kleiner, Perkins Caulfield and Byers.

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