Yesterday we announced that Workvivo has raised an additional $22m (€20m) investment from Tiger Global. It’s been an incredible journey over the past two years since we raised our Series A, and this new funding will help us to continue to grow, make our product better and welcome aboard even more happy customers. The opportunity in our space is truly enormous, and we are looking to make a real and meaningful impact in how people connect with each other in the modern work environment. Since we last raised funding, we’ve endured a global pandemic, and witnessed first-hand a major shift in how people work. We’ve been fortunate enough to be at the centre of this change, getting a first-person view of the changing needs of employees and what companies need to do as a result.
At Workvivo, we’ve always been a little bit contrary in our approach to investment. When we started the business, we avoided investors altogether, choosing instead to bootstrap and build the company through organic revenue-driven growth instead. Then in late 2019, we met Eric S. Yuan, founder and CEO of Zoom, who came on board as our first external investor. Following this, we decided that the opportunity for Workvivo was huge and it made a lot of sense to raise capital to grow the business to achieve its potential. We raised our $16.2m Series A round in 2020 with a 1-slide pitch deck, validation in the form of many happy customers and very strong traction.
Since then, we’ve been growing steadily but very deliberately. Many times we’ve been urged to go faster, to deploy capital more quickly and not to be overly concerned about capital efficiency. After all, cash was in abundant supply and we could always raise more if we needed it. We’ve never been comfortable with that logic, so instead we’ve done things our own way, maintained a solid amount of runway and only invested in areas once we were confident that doing so would lead to a positive outcome.
When we raised our A round, we had 16 people in the business. Today we have a team of almost 130 incredible people, across Ireland, Europe and pretty much every corner of the United States. With each and every hire, we’ve taken the time to make sure that we’re hiring not just the right person, but also the right role at the right time. If you ask anyone who works at Workvivo what it’s like they’ll probably tell you that we have a phenomenal culture. This is something we are obsessive about protecting - and we’ve seen far too many companies struggle with this by growing too quickly and making bad hiring decisions. This year we codified our culture, set our company values and invested in ways to protect our own employee experience as we grow. And although the team has expanded rapidly, the people we have hired are truly fantastic and we couldn’t be happier about the shape of the company right now.
One thing I’ve been asked a lot in recent years is whether Workvivo will one day be a unicorn. I always answer yes - and I do think we will hit a $1bn+ valuation and beyond at some point. But to be honest, we’ve never really seen valuation as a success metric at Workvivo. Ultimately, valuations are at the mercy of the market - and as we’ve seen in recent months, this can be extremely volatile and change almost overnight. And while valuations are of course important in terms of things like dilution, we’ve always looked at them as more of a vanity metric than anything else. We’ve never tended to focus on things that are largely outside of our control, instead preferring to focus on those things that we know we can make an impact on. So while we’re delighted that we’ve tripled the valuation of the company from our last round, for us the true measure of success for a scaling company like ours is winning more customers, increasing ARR and growing the business to become the leader in the market. All of this, while working with a group of people who share our ambition and values, and having a lot of fun along the way. Those are the things we care about and are passionate about.
I’ve been part of companies in the past where far too much focus was put on raising money. Impressing investors became as important as impressing new and existing customers. At the end of the day, investment is a tool to help your company grow and become more successful. I think for too many years the startup world has glorified raising money as an achievement, and for many it’s become a goal in itself. This is wrong, and recent events have shown exactly why. So while I’m delighted to share the news about our additional investment - and it is a milestone worth celebrating - we’re still laser focused on the milestones that truly count. For us, this funding round secures our financial position, extends our runway further again and increases the probability of us achieving our ambitions and realising our potential.
We are incredibly excited about what the future holds for our company. We’ve hit a lot of major growth milestones recently, and we have all the ingredients we need for success - an incredible team, a great product, customers who love us and have no problem telling the world how much, and a strong balance sheet to help us grow. Now it’s all about execution - evolving our product to truly shape the future of this market, supercharging our sales team and continuing our journey to become a renowned brand that is the de-facto company people think about when they’re talking about our space. We’re doing great, but there’s a lot more greatness to come yet. Watch this space!