Investors Double Down on InsightSquared and Business Analytics
Business intelligence is coming to the masses—and one local company is cashing in.
InsightSquared hasn’t “squared” its money yet, but it has doubled it. The Cambridge, MA, software startup has closed a $13.5 million Series C funding round that matches its total raised previously. The new money comes from Atlas Venture, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, NextView Ventures, and new investor Two Sigma Ventures.
More important, the company has doubled its headcount and revenue over the past year. It now has more than 100 employees. CEO and founder Fred Shilmover declined to give any absolute revenue numbers, but he did say InsightSquared has more than 500 customers. That’s “the tip of the iceberg,” he says, considering how many businesses don’t want to use expensive analytics software from giants like IBM and SAP.
“It’s up to us to execute and accelerate,” Shilmover says. “We want to build a huge economic engine.”
InsightSquared helps customers connect their business data from disparate sources, like Salesforce, Zendesk, and QuickBooks, and display it on a dashboard to see sales trends and other patterns. One reason for the company’s traction is that other venture-backed startups have used its software to run analyses, put together spreadsheets, and visualize data for board presentations and fundraising pitches. (Word of mouth travels fast in the techie and VC community.)
The company is also looking more like the quintessential Boston tech startup: business-to-business focus, selling to small-to-medium businesses, providing software-as-a-service for analytics and business intelligence. That puts the firm in the same rough mold as Constant Contact, HubSpot, and LogMeIn—all companies that grew steadily before hitting the public markets.
InsightSquared isn’t moving up-market to sell to large enterprises yet. Its plan since launching in 2011 was to level the playing field for small businesses—not Fortune 1000 companies—by providing cheaper analytics software. “Over time, we are able to work with larger and larger organizations,” Shilmover says. But there is still plenty of work to do in its core market.
InsightSquared didn’t have much trouble fundraising, even though Series C tech rounds are relatively rare these days. “When you have strong numbers, it creates opportunity to raise money in good and bad environments,” Shilmover says. He says he’s been focused on his own business, but hasn’t noticed much of a crunch in mid-stage funding deals.
“There’s a natural pyramid,” he says. “There’s an incredible amount of seed funding right now, which has positive benefits to the ecosystem—but not all of those companies are going to make it.”