Papaya Mobile goes public and announces global expansion of mobile advertising services


Papaya Mobile, the programmatic mobile advertising firm based in Beijing, China, has gone public at a valuation of $337m. The company offers a range of mobile advertising solutions including Facebook, Google and Twitter services.

Papaya Mobile goes public



Papaya Mobile was launched in 2008 as a social gaming services, but has since shifted focus to mobile programmatic ads. Obviously, that shift paid off for Si Shen – one of China’s few female CEOs.

In 2016, the company’s revenue is expected to increase six-fold to reach $153.3m, compared to 2015. Net profits are projected to be $15.3m.

In an interview with VentureBeat, Si Shen explains:

si shen

“We had a lot of experience in promoting games and content outside of China. As more Chinese companies expanded overseas, we picked them up as clients. They didn’t have the technology and experience in how to acquire good quality users outside of China.”

She adds that Baidu was of particular importance in establishing Papaya Ads (formerly AppFlood) and expanding the company China-wide. Clients have also included Alibaba, and Qihoo 360. Demand from eCommerce firms has been particularly strong and makes up 30% of ad spend at Payapa Mobile.

At a reach of 100,000 to 200,000 new users for one client per day, the company is well aligned for growth, and has plans to expand in the US, Southeast Asia and India in 2016.

Shen says that her clients are Chinese and US firms wishing to acquire users overseas and within the US specifically.

VentureBeat adds that Shen holds a special significance as a female CEO in China. Since 2008, she has become a bit of a celebrity in the country. Shen comments:

“I never really thought about being one of the only female CEOs of a public Chinese company. It’s going to make us unique in the market. It could be a good marketing point for the company, especially for attracting female talent and female engineers.”