Zipwhip Closes $22.5M Series C Funding Round to Meet Growing Demand for Business Texting
SEATTLE, Sept. 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Zipwhip, the leading software platform for two-way business texting, announced today the close of $22.5 million in Series C financing led by OpenView, an expansion-stage venture firm. Previous investors Voyager Capital and Microsoft Ventures also participated. The new capital will be invested in the core network, accelerating the product roadmap and scaling sales and marketing efforts.
Since closing its Series B last October, Zipwhip has increased monthly recurring revenue by 60 percent, hired over 100 new employees, including five new senior leaders, and expanded into larger offices. The growth reflects strong market demand for Zipwhip's conversational texting software, which lets businesses communicate with customers the way they prefer, by texting with any existing landline, VoIP or toll free phone number.
"Email is here to stay, but texting offers a short-format, high-priority channel to escalate important conversations. There are over 200 million business phone numbers in the U.S., and it's only a matter of time until every business line is text enabled," said John Lauer, CEO of Zipwhip. "We're looking forward to OpenView's contributions as they bring a wealth of industry knowledge and a proven track record of working with successful startups to capture SMB markets and move upstream to enterprise."
Texting is a key driver of customer engagement and loyalty across nearly every consumer industry, and major platforms are taking notice. Google's expansion of Rich Communication Services (RCS) texting globally, the new Click-to-Message ad extension in AdWords and the anticipated launch of Apple Business Chat later this year are all undeniable signs of a business-texting market that is going mainstream. Zipwhip is the de facto routing provider for high-throughput A2P (application-to-person) messaging traffic, so mainstream adoption drives demand for its cross-platform texting solutions.
"It's clear that communication today is centered around messaging, but for too long businesses have been behind on delivering an easy and intuitive way for their customers to get in touch. Zipwhip provides the answer through its game-changing oftware and platform," said Scott Maxwell, founder and Managing Partner at OpenView, who joins the Zipwhip board. "We are thrilled to partner with John and his team to help the company gain further traction and continue to broaden its reach."
Zipwhip's software delivers for business texting what Microsoft Outlook achieves for business email: an application that boosts workplace productivity by supporting real human conversations at scale across any device. "This funding will enable Zipwhip's team to build on its leadership position in providing texting solutions that help businesses connect with their customers," said Bill McAleer, partner with Voyager Capital.
"Texting has become a ubiquitous form of communication, so it's great to see innovators like Zipwhip making it easy for businesses to engage customers through this channel," said Lisa Nelson, managing director, Microsoft Ventures. "Zipwhip's platform is seeing great momentum and Microsoft Ventures is excited to continue to support them in their growth."
A Seattle-based SaaS company, Zipwhip is modernizing the texting medium by adding text messaging to existing landline, VoIP and toll free phone numbers. Zipwhip pairs direct network connectivity with easy out-of-the-box software, so businesses of any size can give customers the choice to "text or call" and handle two-way text conversations at scale. Learn more about Zipwhip at www.zipwhip.com.
OpenView, the expansion stage venture firm, helps build software companies into market leaders. Through our Expansion Platform, we help companies hire the best talent, acquire and retain the right customers and partner with industry leaders so they can dominate their markets. Our focus on the expansion stage makes us uniquely suited to provide truly tailored operational support to our portfolio companies. Learn more about OpenView at openviewpartners.com.
About Voyager Capital
Voyager Capital is a leading West Coast information technology venture firm that provides entrepreneurs with the resources, experience and connections to build successful companies. Voyager invests primarily in early stage software, analytics, digital media and IOT companies, where the firm's domain expertise, go-to-market and team building resources help build market leaders. Voyager Capital has $420 million under management with offices in Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; and Menlo Park, California.
About Microsoft Ventures
Microsoft Ventures is the corporate venture arm of Microsoft, the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world. Microsoft Ventures partners with visionary entrepreneurs looking to drive digital transformation. As part of its promise to portfolio companies, Microsoft Ventures offers unrivaled access to go-to-market resources and strategic relationships globally. Microsoft Ventures currently operates in London, New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Tel Aviv. Learn more on www.microsoftventures.com.
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