Smedvig Capital exits Captify, one of the UK’s biggest ad tech success stories, as part of majority investment by New York based private equity firm, SFW Capital Partners

Sophie Day
Smedvig Capital
Published in
4 min readJul 14, 2021


Smedvig have worked closely with Captify over the last 6 years of their scaling journey, supporting the founders Dom and Adam to build the optimal conditions for exceptional sustained growth and creating great foundations for future expansion. We are excited to continue to champion Captify alongside new partners, SFW Capital Partners.

Captify Founders Dominic Joseph & Adam Ludwin

Smedvig Capital is delighted to announce that portfolio company Captify, a ‘privacy first’ search technology leader, has secured a majority investment with New York based SFW Capital Partners. Smedvig Capital, alongside other existing investor Panoramic Growth Equity and all the main existing shareholders, have taken part in this investment and will continue to support the company through the next stage of growth.

2021 marks a significant milestone for Captify as they celebrate ten years of revolutionising the future of search across the open web. Through direct integrations with the world’s leading publishers and e-commerce providers, Captify is the only privacy-centric, first-party, search data-based ecosystem. Without reliance on third-party cookies, the company is the largest independent processor of search data outside of Google.

Smedvig Capital invested in Captify in 2015, leading their Series B round when the company was already making an impact as one of the fastest growing businesses in the European ad tech market. In six years, the company has scaled significantly from a London HQ to eight global offices and more than 230 employees thanks to an exceptional management team with a strong growth mindset and pioneering core values and culture.

Today more than 800 leading brands including Disney, Unilever, eBay, Mercedes-Benz, Microsoft, Nestle, GSK, Uber, Mars, P&G, Sony, and Toyota use Captify’s unique Search Intelligence Platform as an integral component of their digital market strategies to provide insights that are higher in intent and more granular than other platforms. Forever the gamechanger, the latest evolution of Captify’s platform includes a unique cookieless, search-powered offering that allows advertisers to seamlessly transition to a consumer privacy-focused, cookieless future.

Dominic Joseph, Co-Founder and CEO of Captify, commented: ‘Smedvig have been a high-quality partner for us since their investment 6 years ago, bringing expertise and strategic decision making to the table. We have enjoyed a hugely positive and productive relationship where we worked collaboratively on key challenges and opportunities and Smedvig’s support has helped us grow the top line and bottom line of the business considerably.’

Jon Lerner, MD at Smedvig Capital, commented: ‘Captify have trailblazed a path in a difficult industry and have done so with integrity and passion. In many ways Captify was a typical deal for us — fast growing, disruptive to a large industry, differentiated with its technology and data asset and backed by a loyal client base. We have enjoyed a great relationship with the founders and one that will endure for many years to come. Dom and Adam have challenged us as much as we have them, and we have learnt a huge amount as we have pushed boundaries together on geographic growth, people development and product extension. I have admired and enjoyed Captify’s culture, which is second to none. Their zeal for equality and inclusiveness is inspirational. We are excited to continue to support the business in its next phase of growth, driven by this unique culture.’

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About Captify

Captify is the leading Search Intelligence Platform for the open web and the largest independent holder of first-party search data outside of Google, connecting the real-time searches from over 2 billion devices globally. Its Search Intelligence technology powers omnichannel programmatic advertising and real-time insights for the world’s biggest brands, such as Disney, Unilever, eBay, Mercedes-Benz, Microsoft, Nestle, GSK, Uber, Mars, P&G, Sony, and Toyota — without reliance on third-party cookies. Captify brings brands more customers, publishers greater yield and consumers the most relevant digital experiences.

About Smedvig Capital

Since 1996 Smedvig Capital has partnered with and helped scale over 70 companies. Leading Series A/B rounds, we are passionate about finding and investing in the best fast-growing businesses across the UK, Nordics, and Netherlands. We work closely with a small number of high-quality teams and build strong relationships with our founders. We’re not afraid to roll up our sleeves and be there for our portfolio when and how we’re needed through the inevitable ups and downs of growing a business. We’re a flexible source of capital supporting and accelerating ambition with a long-term view, often backing companies over multiple rounds all the way to exit. We understand that great things can take time.

About SFW Capital Partners

SFW Capital Partners is a specialized private equity firm that invests in leading Information, Software, Industrial and Healthcare Technology companies. These companies, which include providers of information, software, instrumentation, laboratory products, and related solutions, provide a high return on investment to their customers and can serve a wide variety of end-markets. Our principals’ 25+ years of investing in and experience with relevant business models, technologies, competitive dynamics, and service requirements gives us confidence in our ability to support management teams in growing their companies and building value.