Urals | Technology & innovation

Russian online collaboration platform raises international investment

12 Jan '22
Russian IT startup Miro, developing an online collaboration platform, raised $ 400 million in a new round of funding. According to the TechCrunch portal, as a result, the company was valued at $ 17.5 billion.

Miro, known as RealtimeBoard until 2019, is backed by Russians Andrei Khusid and Oleg Shardin, natives of Perm.

According to the results of the new round, a large venture fund Iconiq Capital entered the list of the company's investors. He currently manages the investments of Facebook founder (now known as Meta) Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter creator Jack Dorsey.

Together with Iconiq Capital, investment companies Accel, Atlassian, Dragoneer, GIC, Salesforce Ventures and TCV have invested in the IT startup. Not without individual investors. These include the head of cloud-based Snowflake, Frank Slootman, and DocuSign CEO Dan Springer. Co-founders of the cloud service Airtable Howie Liu and Andrew Ofstad also invested in Miro.

What is the platform for

The creation of Andrey Khusid and Oleg Shardin is intended to simplify the remote interaction of company employees. The platform is designed to create and share virtual canvases of visualization and discuss various ideas of employees. On these virtual canvases, you can build diagrams, draw sketches, and use other ways to visualize ideas.

The service also allows you to hold virtual meetings of colleagues and exchange various content - documents, images, etc. It has integration with Google Docs, corporate messenger Slack, Trello and other collaboration services.

The default platform is free. However, it does offer a paid subscription option.

Rapid growth of a startup

The company was founded in 2011. According to its statistics, as of January 2022, more than 30 million people use its platform, although in May 2021 there were half of them.

Taking into account the new, third round of investments in its history, Miro has raised $ 476 million in funding. This is her largest round. For example, the previous fundraising, which was led by the mentioned fund Iconiq Capital, brought her $ 50 million.

Andrey Khusid served as CEO of the company in January 2022. Oleg Shardin was not mentioned in the list of top managers.

The company has 12 offices around the world, but only one of them is located in Russia. It is located in Perm, where its founders come from, and this is the first office of the company. Branches of the company are open in Amsterdam (Holland), Berlin and Munich (Germany), Tokyo (Japan), Sydney (Australia), Paris (France) and London (Britain). The largest concentration of Miro offices is in the United States - they are located in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Austin.

Despite the fact that Miro was created by the Russians, and even though one of the company's offices is located in Russia, there was no Russian-language version of the project's website as of January 10, 2022.

The most active period of startup growth fell on the coronavirus pandemic. The company held the penultimate round of investments at the time of publication of the material in April 2020. In less than two years, it increased the number of users from 5 million to 30 million.The base of paid subscription users during the same period grew to 20 thousand to 130 thousand.

Miro claims that 99 Fortune 100 companies are using its platform. 20 of them have signed annual contracts worth over $ 1 million. The platform's users include Cisco, Dell, Deloitte, HP and Okta.

The company is also rapidly increasing its staff. If in April 2020 there were only 300 of them, then at the beginning of 2022 there are already 1200 specialists working for Miro.

Future plans

According to the co-founder of Miro, Andrey Khusid, the startup intends to invest the funds raised during the round, first of all, in the development of its products and the technologies used in them. The CEO of the company did not rule out the possibility of investing money in its development through acquisitions and mergers with other companies.

At the end of 2020, the company announced for the first time that it had made a profit. According to the Financial Times, in 2021, in which remote work due to the pandemic continued to flourish, Miro's revenues were $ 300 million. This is a threefold increase compared to 2020. It is not clear how the newly raised funds will help the company to further increase revenue.
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