I am delighted to announce that Conversica—a category creator and leader in Intelligent Virtual Assistants (IVA) helping organizations attract, acquire and grow customers at scale—raised $20 million in a Series D funding round led by our friends at Hollyport Capital.
This new infusion of funding is a clear indication of market demand for Intelligent Automation solutions and a vote of confidence from our investors who recognize our dedication to building the world’s largest augmented workforce.
Despite the difficulties of 2020, Conversica has made amazing strides. I couldn’t be more proud of our accomplishments so far, nor more optimistic about our future. Let me take a moment to reflect on the hard work of our staff, what this funding means for us, and where we are going from here.
Confidence Is in the Air
As CEO of Conversica, I am extremely proud of the fact our organization was profitable in Q2 2020; a quarter none of us could’ve anticipated but to which all of us had to adjust. I’m so pleased with how our employees, partners and business leaders met the challenges of a COVID-19 workplace head-on. To survive Q2 under COVID is enough, but to be profitable in Q2 under COVID is truly an accomplishment. Thank you, team.
Thanks to the hard work of all of you, my fellow Conversicans. I get goosebumps thinking about the amazing stories you shared from our customers in how we not only helped them, but in some cases directly contributed to their survival. When I look at our customers today, I don’t see companies asking to leave our network, or customers’ services being paused, or accounts downsizing their Intelligent Virtual Assistant use-cases. We are truly lucky in a way many of my CEO peers could only dream about. We’ve experienced a “new normal” where our customers are embracing their digital transformations. In fact, COVID-19 has resulted in Conversica’s overall network operating at 20 percent higher than its peak in pre-COVID times, due to businesses now operating predominantly in an online or digital world.
This might be surprising to some. But the reasons are simple: our IVAs are helping Marketing teams find more qualified leads, accelerating handraisers for Sales teams, and both retaining and growing the account base for our clients’ Customer Success teams. We even have our IVAs helping Finance teams on collections. Our Intelligent Automation solution is helping our customers find more revenue-generating opportunities now than at any other time in our company’s history.
Why Raise Capital Now?
This is an unprecedented time to be raising funds. Many of my peer CEOs would echo the fact that equity capital is expensive, especially during COVID. They would also say that if you have lots of cash and are profitable, raising funds should simply be deferred.
Conversica has successfully managed its business which continues to be a challenge for most companies in 2020. Truth be told, my plans to optimize the business were in progress starting back in 4Q 2019, long before this economic downturn hit. Q2 2020 became an acceleration point for us because of COVID, but our efforts to optimize the business was not an explicit response to the crisis.
We had a lot of interest from external investors who recognized our strides in establishing our own category in the market (Intelligent Virtual Assistants for revenue-generating teams), how large that category will soon become (Intelligent Automation in the front office), and our unparalleled business strategy (moving up-market to service mid-market and enterprise customers). We are well-positioned to raise new capital even in these troubled times.
“Conversica’s value proposition is changing the way businesses interact with customers,” said John Carter, a private equity investor since 1987 and Chief Executive of Hollyport Capital responsible for all of its investment activities. “We view Intelligent Virtual Assistants as an innovative opportunity to optimize the workforce and build customer loyalty at scale, completely transforming the way revenue-generating teams operate.”
Many companies raise new capital for both the ability to sustain their operations (aka they are far from being profitable) as well as for growth. In our case, we only wanted to raise capital against a profitable growth model (aka you are not spending $2 for every $1 in ARR).
COVID may present us with hyper-growth opportunities by expanding our operations inorganically through the acquisition of others. This is why we’ve been working with the global M&A and advisory firm, Macquarie Capital since my arrival in October of 2019. Stay tuned.
I was telling my staff that under normal times we might have raised over a hundred million and built our war chest of capital. But the reality is that Conversica can still leapfrog others with the injection of $20 million into a profitable business.
Our added funds will be used on a combination of Sales and Marketing enablement, global expansion through our partners, as well as further product development. These efforts help bolster our top line, but it also ensures that we further differentiate our Intelligent Automation Platform through investments in product and engineering.
Conversica will continue to strive for greatness in 2020 and beyond. Our goals for the future are the same as they are today:
- Assist our wonderful customers by helping them increase revenue (vs. just reducing costs). Who doesn’t want to overachieve their revenue targets?
- Deliver the best in Intelligent Automation technologies to ensure a wonderful experience. We celebrated our NPS of 62 over 2019. But maybe we can sustain our peak of 78?
- Foster beneficial relationships with our partners. They are our path to non-linear growth. Why not put our tools into the hands of others?
- And empower and support our incredible employees, who are truly our core differentiation. Don’t great things happen when you have a team who LOVES their job?
When I came on as Conversica’s CEO, it was my goal to optimize the business and accelerate profitable growth. And we accomplished this in under two quarters. Now it’s my goal to truly accelerate our #1 position in delivering revenue-generating augmented workforces.