SuperAwesome, a UK start-up which claims a global audience of more than 500 million children, will announce this week that it is raising tens of millions of pounds from the sale of a stake in the company.
Sky News has learnt that the London-based business, which works with brands and content-owners such as Hasbro, Warner Brothers and E One, the owner of Peppa Pig, is selling a minority shareholding to Mayfair Equity Partners.
The deal is expected to be announced on Monday.
SuperAwesome’s latest fundraising represents a vote of confidence by its investors in the explosive growth in the global digital advertising market aimed at under-13s.
The market is already worth £615m ($800m) and is growing at approximately 25% annually as it benefits from structural shifts away from traditional media such as television.
SuperAwesome works with companies to help them comply with strict rules on marketing to children, with the US and European Union barring advertisers from capturing user data from under-13s.
The US’s Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 2013 and the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, introduced last year, have highlighted a more urgent need for brands to comply strictly with such rules.
SuperAwesome owns a platform called AwesomeAds, which matches advertising campaigns with appropriate kid-safe sites and apps.
It also owns PopJam, a social content platform which is aimed at under-13s.
So-called “pester power” makes children a lucrative market for consumer brands to market themselves.
The decision by SuperAwesome to turn to Mayfair, which owns stakes in companies such as Ovo Energy and Yo! Sushi, follows interest from a broad group of potential investors.
Mayfair has built a track record investing in entrepreneurial businesses in the consumer and telecoms, media and technology industries.
Sources said that Mayfair was investing roughly £20m in SuperAwesome, making it a substantial funding round for a UK tech start-up.
Other existing investors in SuperAwesome are also understood to be participating.
It was unclear on Sunday what valuation the company was raising the new investment round at, although reports earlier this year said that Dylan Collins, the founder and chief executive, was examining plans for a £200m stock market listing.
Sources said the latest investment would provide SuperAwesome with the firepower to accelerate its expansion into new markets.
The start-up already operates from London, Los Angeles, New York, Singapore and Sydney, and says it is growing by more than 100% – presumably in revenue terms – annually.
Neither Mayfair nor SuperAwesome would comment on Sunday.