nexla, a company that participated in the 2017 disruption battlefield in New York City, is building its data operations startup the old-fashioned way. After launching in beta and securing a seed of $3.5 million in Battlefield, it has gone on to build a cash flow positive business. With a strong financial foundation today, the company announced a $12 million Series A.
Industry Ventures led the round with participation from Liberty Global Ventures, Blumberg Capital, Engineering Capital, Storm Ventures, Correlation Ventures and several industry angels.
The company’s co-founder and CEO Saket Saurabh says that his company is building a data platform, bringing together integration, preparation and monitoring of data in one place. When he started the company in 2017, he was a bit ahead of the market, but since then the data space, especially related to machine learning, is heating up and the company is seeing traction with clients like DoorDash, Instacart, and more. Poshmark and Freshworks, among others.
Saurabh says this has piqued investor interest and believes this is the right time to take extra money. “The good thing for us is that the cash flow is positive, it means we can control our destiny as a company, and we thought it was the right time for us to take capital and speed things up, ” They said.
He says that despite an initial pandemic slowdown last year, most of the company’s customers have seen an increased need for platforms like Nexla to deal with the increasing volume of business data.
“Data is essential for most of the businesses we work with, and I think we have seen more demand” [after the initial stages of the pandemic]. For example, companies like Instacart and DoorDash certainly saw an increase in demand, and that means they need more technology and more solutions. It is definitely a factor in our growth,” Saurabh said.
He says his clients are not other startups, but enterprises that need to deal with huge amounts of data. “What benefits us is that enterprise commitment to data and technology has been and only increased, the need for acceleration has grown, the need to support new business models has grown,” he said.
Unlike a lot of startups that may start out in a small or medium-sized business, then move on to venture, Nexla’s initial customers have been large companies. The goal of this money is to actually expand the market by offering it to smaller organizations. “It’s not just the big companies that need it. There are more companies getting there earlier in the cycle. So for us, that’s a big part of the push.” [moving forward] Bringing it to the masses, bringing it to companies earlier in the development cycle,” he said.
With the new money, the company plans to hire more people and reach around 50 employees by the end of the year. Saurabh believes that having a remote company will help create a more diverse group. “I think it is absolutely important and necessary, and the fact that it is now possible to hire people remotely, we are already building a very diverse, somewhat global team.”
While the company is building a worldwide team, it has an office presence in San Mateo, California and Saurabh expects a hybrid approach when offices do reopen. We find that small companies in the early stage, it is extremely valuable and useful for the people. Allowing face-to-face time to get to know each other and build trust. So we will continue with this hybrid model, where we will also facilitate remote team members, opportunities to meet in person whenever it is safe for them to do so.”