Today, companies are starting to leverage new technologies in their workplaces to make their buildings and workflows more intelligent, and more focused on the employee.
One way they're working toward a frictionless experience for every employee and office visitor is through sensor and beacon technology – part of the IoT revolution that's using connectivity to deliver benefits to both enterprises and employees.
EventBoard already is providing Internet of Things experiences to our customers, but what’s coming next is even more exciting. We will extend our leadership in the marketplace, leveraging our partnerships to build integrations with some of the most important software and hardware technologies our customers use every day. We'll also be building integrations with some systems they don't use regularly yet, but will come to rely on in the coming years.
Our Series B round of $13.5 million for EventBoard, announced today, will help make this possible. The round is being led by Nokia Growth Partners (NGP), with significant participation from GE Ventures, as well as from our current investors.
We're excited to forge ahead with these incredible investors. The team at NGP has deep experience and a strong thematic focus around a vision of the connected enterprise, which we share. GE, through its investment arm, GE Ventures, believes in the future of intelligent environments, especially among enterprise companies.
We happen to be right in the middle of both of these themes, and are wholly focused on delivering this future with them.
Several people have asked me why we raised money from strategic investors, instead of more traditional venture capital firms, like Greycroft, who led our Series A, or Zetta, who led our Seed. My response: Every startup should raise money from the people or the firm who best aligns with their company, at their stage. We found this alignment in each of our investors from the beginning. In this round, we have done the same.
When we first began building this company almost three years ago, we recognized that the office was changing rapidly, as pioneered by the Silicon Valley / San Francisco office environment. We knew that three things had to work seamlessly together: people, places and technology.
Right around the same time, organizations like Gartner started to create a category for analysis called the Digital Workplace.
Now, cross-functional teams across IT, Facilities and HR have started to figure out how to deal with the perceived onslaught of millennials using different technologies in the workplace. In fact, we discovered in a recent national survey that workplace happiness is highly correlated with being able to use the right technology at work.
We’ve recently witnessed the rapid rise of collaboration cloud technologies like Slack and Zoom, as well as the incredible enterprise adoption of Office365, and the proliferation of connected IoT devices in commercial offices. With these as harbingers of macro trends, the workplace of the future is closer than many think.
To this end, we’re building EventBoard. Conference room tablet displays are a great wedge into a company’s workplace workflow. Meeting rooms, like many other shared resources in an organization, are critical to the people who use them. Finding the right place to meet with the right people, with the right technology on hand, will be central to the digital workplace of the future.
But not only that, the vast amount of workplace data about how employees use technology and space, which most organizations haven’t previously been able to capture or understand, will provide incredible insights into how they can improve the experience and workflow for the entire organization.
By improving the experience and helping our customers understand the data, we intend to optimize the workplace for every company on the planet. Raising a Series B is just the next step to us getting there.
I’m grateful for the hard work of our team, existing investors and advisors, as well as our customers, who are also our friends – especially the early ones who helped us evangelize our product and our vision. I believe we are making a difference for every one of them, as they’ve made a huge difference for us already. Now the real work begins. :)
Shaun Ritchie (@shaunjritchie on Twitter) is co-founder and CEO of EventBoard.