GWI, an audience insights company, has raised more than £130 million in funding, valuing the company at over $850 million. 

The Series B financing was led by Permira’s growth fund.

Founded in 2009 by CEO, Tom Smith, GWI has become the leading global market research and audience insights software platform. Receiving $40 million Series A funding from the New York-based growth fund Stripes in 2018, GWI has since tripled recurring revenue, reaching nearly 400 employees globally.

GWI delivers global insights at scale, enabling the world’s top brands, agencies, and media organisations to gain deep understandings of their audiences. Clients can analyse harmonised-data sets across geographies through an easy-to-use platform, gaining faster insights and time-to-market. 

The investment will further advance GWI’s software-as-a-service platform, extending coverage and reach and capturing more data points from more consumers worldwide – particularly from underserved markets and segments – and innovating in UX, machine learning, and natural language. 

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“Companies today need an instantaneous view of their audience everywhere in the world,” said CEO and founder Tom Smith.

“The traditional approach of market research is not fit for purpose – too slow, incredibly expensive, and lacks the scale and detail needed. Our technology has solved this problem and the result has been incredible growth over the last three years. 

“We can’t wait to work with Permira on our five-year goal to put audience insights in the workflow of every professional.”


GWI joins Carta, FullStory, G2, Klarna and Sysdig, among others, as a Permira portfolio company.

Alex Melamud, principal at Permira, commented: “Understanding the digital consumer will continue to be increasingly important to brands, agencies, and media organisations who focus on engaging and acquiring customers through digital channels. 

“Companies competing in today’s marketplace need instant audience insights and we believe GWI’s modern platform and globally, harmonised data set provides a unique solution to any data storyteller. 

“We look forward to leveraging our global platform to support GWI’s continued growth and expansion across international markets.”