The branded content market is worth an estimated $23B globally and $10B in the USA, and advertisers are constantly on the hunt to find clever ways to market new products, so they’re turning to Ryff. This LA startup has developed a method to incorporate video game technology to dynamically embed brand placements that can be inserted into film and TV broadcasts in a seamless, efficient, and in a trackable manner. Ryff is strategically setting itself up to be the Google AdWords of the moving image and the future of advertising.
LA TechWatch sat down with CEO and founder Roy Taylor to learn more about Ryff’s origin, cutting edge technology, and recent round of funding.
Who were your investors and how much did you raise?
We raised $1.1M Seed from several leading executives from companies such as Lenovo, Dell, AMD, Oracle, etc. This was converted into the A round along with an investment of $2.5M from Indian IT services company, Tech Mahindra.
Tell us about the product or service Ryff offers.
We have developed a new process incorporating video game technology together with photorealistic 3D models that can be inserted into film and TV broadcast to disrupt the $23B branded entertainment industry.
When a frame of film or TV is being constructed it contains minute detail about everything in the frame either through a manifest file or metadata. It is also endlessly editable until it gets compressed into a flat video file, so the data and edit capabilities are lost. Forever. We believe that the introduction of powerful new GPU’s (graphics processor units) into the cloud means that it is no longer necessary to flatten the image.
How is Ryff different?
No one has ever done anything like it before. It is unique.
What market is Ryff targeting and how big is it?
The branded entertainment market in the USA is $10B and it is $23B internationally.
What’s your business model?
We make it possible for brands to change, edit, update, and delete their products into film and TV. Per person for OTT and per DMA for OTA. The brands are very, very excited about this and pay us on a CPM.
How do you measure placements with the use of your technology?
CPM, sales of the product.
What was the funding process like?
Difficult. Everybody says they support and invest in innovation. They do not. They invest in the safest bets possible. Original invention is very, very hard but ultimately rewarding.
What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?
Getting to the real decision makers and having to deal with time wasters.
What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?
The opportunity is enormous. True unicorns are rare. Ryff is going to be Google AdWords of the moving image. We will make it possible for 28M small and medium businesses in America to get their brands into entertainment. Countless more around the world. That is a real unicorn opportunity.
What are the milestones you plan to achieve in the next six months?
First broadcasts on OTT and OTA.
What advice can you offer companies in Los Angeles that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?
Meet others in the same position. It will give you heart and you will get great tips. For example, I had never heard of doc.send. It is amazing, you can see who really looked at your deck, stop it being traded like a deck of cards, and see how long they looked. I am deeply grateful to Todd Hooper for sharing that with me. You are not alone out there. We need an association or club for LA startup CEO’s.
Where do you see the company going now over the near term?
Growing faster than any company that ever started before.
What is your favorite restaurant in LA?
I have two. The Little Door on 3rd St and Ysabels on Fairfax.