Madison Software Startup Drifty Raises $1M

[Updated 3/10/14, 12:48 pm, after speaking with Drifty officials.]

Drifty, the Madison, WI-based startup that builds online platforms for people to create websites and mobile applications, has raised $1 million in a private securities offering, according to a document filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Arthur Ventures, a venture capital firm with offices in Fargo, ND, and Minneapolis, was the sole investor in the offering of stock options, warrants, or rights to acquire another security, said Max Lynch, Drifty co-founder and chief technology officer. Drifty used a “simple agreement for future equity,” or “safe” note, to secure the seed funding round. The funding documents, published by Silicon Valley startup accelerator program Y Combinator, are meant as an alternative to convertible debt notes.

Lynch co-founded Drifty in 2012 with CEO Ben Sperry. The company has created three software products: Codiqa, a drag-and-drop tool for developing mobile apps; Jetstrap, which allows users of Twitter’s Bootstrap mobile development platform to create websites without needing to code; and Ionic Framework, an open-source system for building mobile apps that launched in December.

Last year, Drifty participated in TechStars Cloud, the startup accelerator’s San Antonio program. Going through the accelerator helped the company triple its revenue, Drifty said in a post on its website.

The seed money will allow Drifty to double its current staff of nine, adding more software developers and a sales and marketing employee, Lynch said. The funds will also finance the development of more features within its Ionic Framework system.

“Ionic is the future of the company, and we are focusing less on our two previous products,” Lynch said.

Drifty intends to generate revenue from Ionic by creating back-end mobile services for customers, like analytics and marketing and development tools, Lynch said.

“Both Codiqa and Jetstrap were useful for prototyping apps,” Lynch said. “We built Ionic because it gave us an opportunity to build something relevant to the entire lifecycle of an app.”

Codiqa and Jetstrap are used by more than 250,000 people worldwide, and more than 200 apps per day are being created using Ionic, Lynch said.

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