Taylor Davidson was working on a mobile wallet ten years ago, building a system to put PayPal onto people’s PalmPilots. “I was trying to do intelligent apps for smart phones before the technology totally existed,” he told Betabeat by phone. “Now you can see the explosion of this stuff because the technology has caught up with the ideas.”
Starting today, Davidson is the new senior associate at the venture arm of kbs+p, which launched an effort to fund startups back in February. There has been a lot of growth in corporate venture over the past year, although less in the world of advertising. Davidson will be focusing on ad-tech, mobile and design, looking to find young companies that can sync with work going on at the agency.
Along with a history in private equity and venture, Davidson created a series of financial models under the heading Unstructured Ventures which more than 6,000 startups downloaded.
“I think its clear that the incumbents are not innovating in the mobile space, that the carriers have been disrupted, and forced to work with companies like Apple and Google” says Davidson. Along with the hire, kbs+p announced an investment in PlaceIQ, a Boulder based company that helps advertisers understand the context around location based data. Co-investors include NY Angel and big data lover Roger Ehrenberg.
“There is this wealth of information now from check ins on services like Foursquare and Yelp,” says Davidson. “What we need is to find intelligent ways to shape all that data, so we can gives users and advertisers more context about who and what they are near.”