Venture capital investments dedicated to Internet and mobile search companies topped more than 50 deals in the past two years, per recent research. Venture Capitalists poured $66.6 million into U.S. mobile search companies in 2012, up from $4 million in 2009. Mobile consumer behavior and mobile apps will continue to drive this trend.
It has been a bit of a roller-coaster ride for search companies. V.C. invested $7.4 million in U.S. mobile search companies in 2006, falling to $1.3 million in 2007. During one of the lowest points since, 2009 saw $4 million in investments -- rising to $18.4 million in 2011 and skyrocketing to $66.6 million in 2012.
The following year, investments fell to $14.4 million, and rose to $40.8 million in 2014, according to CB Insights data.
Some believe that mobile apps and dynamic creative optimization on Web sites moved the traditional search model into new territory. Google funded one deep-link search start-up, URX, through its venture capital arm Google Ventures. The company pays app developers to deep link, where a page or section electronically connects two pieces of information, calling the connection an "action" not an "ad."
Here is a little history courtesy of CB Insights. Google raised its $25 million investment from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and Sequoia Capital in 1999, and went through an initial public offering (IPO) in 2014 with a valuation of $23 billion. The year Google got its V.C. investments, U.S. Internet and mobile companies saw $49.8 million -- rising to $109.3 million in 2008, and riding out some bumps through 2014 to land at $95.1 million.
CB Insights also points to a few recent notable V.C. investments. Quixey received $134 million; Swiftype, $22.2 million; Wildcard, $10 million; and Relcy, $9 million.