A Seattle startup with the audacious goal of bringing texting capabilities to 200 million phone numbers in North America has raised $51.5 million. It’s the largest funding round in Seattle so far this year, according to PitchBook data.
Zipwhip, which launched in 2007 and employs 260, makes business texting software. Three years ago, the company had only about 60 employees. It has now raised a total of about $90 million.
The company says on its website that “it imagines a future where voicemail and never-ending games of phone tag are history.” Company research said nearly 75 percent of consumers wished more businesses would use text-messaging to communication.
Zipwhip, which said revenue grew 80 percent last year, says it has already text-enabled 3.3 million business phone numbers. It says it has more than 10,000 customers from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies. Customers include more than 2,000 insurance agencies, almost 150 professional sports teams – including the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks – and nearly 1,000 staffing agencies.
“Zipwhip is the definition of a ten-year overnight success. Over the last decade, we’ve grown, evolved, then grown some more,” says Zipwhip CEO John Lauer.
Current Zipwhip investors OpenView M12 and Voyager Capital participated in the latest round.