With $62.5M in debt financing, Road Runner Media puts digital ads behind commercial vehicles – TechCrunch

If southern california is located Road Runner Media After being successful, you will start seeing too many advertisements while driving.

That’s because the startup is putting digital screens behind technicians’ vans, delivery vehicles, buses, and other commercial vehicles. They can screen both advertisements and serve as brake lights – according to founder and president Randall Lanham, brake light functionality is required if you are placing a sign in the back of a vehicle.

“The way we see it, we’re a digital brake light,” Lanham said. Yes, the brake light is showing the advertisement, but “the driver touching the brake interrupts the advertisement.” (This signal can also indicate turn, turn and emergency flashers. You can see a fake advertisement in the image above, and the actual footage in the video below.)

To further the idea, Lanham (who described himself as a “recovering lawyer”) recruited Chris Riley as CEO – Riley’s experience PepsiCo has been involved for several years as CEO of Australia and New Zealand. And the company announced this week that it had acquired $ 62.5 million in debt financing from Baseline Growth Capital.

The idea of ​​placing advertisements on moving vehicles is not new. Of course, there are advertisements at the top of taxis, and Startup like firefly Also putting digital signage on top of Ubers and Lyfts. But Riley said that Road Runner’s rugged, high-resolution LCD screens are very different due to their size, quality and placement.

“[Taxi-top ads] There is no color, brilliance, clarity, ”he said. “We can run a true video ad on the screen.”

Riley also said that advertisements can be targeted based on GPS and time of day, and the company eventually plans to add sensors that can collect data by actually seeing the ads.

As these large, bright screens can distract drivers, Linham argued that they are actually attracting the driver’s eyes to where they are, and it is very difficult to manufacture a brake light.

“Your eyes are glued to the horizon, which is [Department of Transportation] Wants – on the floor or radio or directly opposite the left or right side, ”he said. “This is where your safest driving happens when your eyes are above the dashboard.”

In fact, Lanham said he is “very passionate” about the company’s mission, which in his view would make roads safer, and create a platform that could also be used to spread public service messages .

“We have the ability to bring back any vehicle and make it safe on highways,” he said. “I really, really believe that we will save lives, if we haven’t already.”

The company says it already has 150 screens live in Atlanta, Boulder, Chicago, Dallas and Los Angeles, with plans to launch screens in Philadelphia and Washington, DC in March.