Today, textPlus has raised $18 million led by The Raine Group with participation by all of our current investors. I want to share with you what this funding means for our company and our users moving forward.
To start, it’s important to remember what a funding event means to us. It’s not a finishing line, but rather a starting gun for innovation and growth. This has been apparent in all of our previous rounds.
- Our $5M Series A led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers allowed us to build our first texting platform originally over our 60611/ GOGII shortcode. We then launched textPlus for iOS in 2009 and exploded onto the scene with a million downloads in our first month.
- Next, our $8M Series B with Matrix Partners allowed us to switch from shortcode to providing users with real telephone numbers. We also launched on Android, brought free texting to Canada, made about 20 key hires, and doubled the size of our business.
- Then, our $15M Series C with GRP Partners enabled us to expand textPlus into a true mobile communications platform and introduce free or very cheap calling in both the US and Canada. We also revamped our Android product, launched on Windows and Nokia, and made another 40 hires to bring us to 100 employees strong.
In the process, we have been tripling the size of our business from one funding round to the next. But regardless of any growth metrics, textPlus has graduated into the next stage of our business. We are no longer a startup. We’ve matured. And evolved.
So what does this latest round of funding mean for the company and our users? Three things: Core quality, international expansion and product innovation.
- Quality starts with the quality of our team. Relentless commitment by a great team is where the foundation of great products starts.
- Alongside quality, we’ll be investing time into expanding our footprint globally. We will provide an improved in-network offering, as well as continue to provide our out-of-network support, which has been a huge differentiation for textPlus.
- Finally, we’ll be looking for ways to make textPlus a better place to share and discover content. Our goal is to be a better experience than your phone through offering a one-stop destination for all your communication while saving money in the process.
If you add all of the above elements together, you’re left with a mission that’s pretty clear. Obviously, we’re continuing to build the world’s largest and most important virtual operator. But it’s more than that. Our users have a relationship with us that transcends most normal utility relationships. In many ways, we’re building the world’s leading mobile communication destination. Building a destination means that textPlus is bigger than any one feature and requires trust and a commitment to a long term vision and relationship with our users.
The timing to create this destination couldn’t be better. We’re right in the middle of one of the largest disruptions yet. Communication has been freed by companies like us that are giving consumers choice, savings and quality. We’re leading what Chetan Sharma has referred to as a fourth wave of telecom.
I believe textPlus will be ten times better in 2013 than it is in 2012. Our team won’t compromise and will never stop raising the bar. By remaining committed to our vision and the quality of our team and product, I am confident textPlus will become one of the most valuable communication companies of the 21st century.
To read more on our news today: The Next Web PandoDaily VentureBeat Variety SocalTech Techmeme LA Biz Journal Digital Media Wire