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Podaddies Wins Funding, Apple Relationship

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Note: For clarification, Podaddies does not have a formal partnership, financial or otherwise, with Apple, rather a close relationship with multiple divisions to provide expertise about downloadable advertising formats. Our use of the word “partnership” led others to report a formal deal had been signed, which is erroneous.

Podaddies, a small, San Francisco-based video advertising startup, is doing quite well off the radar. The company has forged a close relationship with Apple (AAPL) to develop advertising compatibility for the QuickTime and iTunes groups. While the Apple deal doesn’t have a money component, it has led to referrals to potential clients like the New York Times (NYT).

Apple discovered the startup by coming across its ads while they were live on and writing to the [email protected] address, according to Podaddies CEO Nate Pagel. To date, the company, which has just five (soon to be seven) employees, has raised a little over $1 million from Band of Angels and the Angels Forum. [digg=]

Podaddies has developed a marketable expertise in tracking and monetizing downloaded media. Its technology is currently functional on connected iPod and iPhone devices, and Pagel said the company is also working on adding compatibility for disconnected devices. Podaddies is not the only company in the space — competitors such as YuMe Networks and Kiptronic are also working on ad formats for downloads — but it’s the only one working directly with Apple. Apple doesn’t provide ad-supported content itself, and Pagel said he doesn’t think it plans to, but (in our opinion) the relationship with Podaddies could be read as a step in that direction.

Podaddies is also developing ads for Flash, and has and Guba signed as publishers, as well as advertisers like Scion.

See our initial coverage of Podaddies from last December.