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TVision reels in a fresh $11.5M to measure TV viewers’ habits

By Justine Hofherr

Originally Published in Built In Boston

Data seems to be one of the biggest tech buzzwords this year, and our television habits are next in line for in-depth analysis.

No one understands this quite like TVision, an MIT-born startup that measures the habits of TV watchers. The company, which raised a cool $11.5 million this week, aims to provide advertisers, agencies and TV networks with second-by-second data to understand the effectiveness of advertising and programming.

Accomplice and Jump Capital led the round, and the funding will be used to expand into new markets, as well as double TVision’s U.S. headcount by the end of 2019, according to Boston Business Journal.

TVision currently employs around 40 people, with half sitting in the company’s Boston headquarters. The remainder of employees work in TVision’s New York and Tokyo offices.

“This additional investment from our existing investors speaks volumes about both the momentum that we have achieved so far and the opportunity in front of us,” said Yan Liu, CEO of TVision Insights, in a statement. “These funds will support the expansion of our opt-in, privacy-safe, in-home panel, and the growth of our team in order to meet the incredible demand for our TV attention data.”

The company also announced that Luke McGuinness will become the organization’s first president and chief operating officer, bringing over 20 years of experience from the data-driven marketing space, including in audience development, data, measurement and analytics.

He joins TVision from LiveRamp, where he was a member of the executive team.

For the unfamiliar, TVision uses an in-home panel and state-of-the-art computer vision technology to passively (and anonymously) record what’s on TV, who’s watching and how viewers react — including whether they’re actually paying attention or not — and to do this all without invading their privacy.

For example, TVision can help advertisers see which commercials made the most people smile during the 2016 Summer Olympics. Some of the company’s current clients include Hulu, Mars and ABC.

To date, TVision has raised around $21 million, signaling there’s no shortage of parties that want access to TV attention data.