This is another one for those who love to mark the consumerization of enterprise technology: iCharts, the cloud-based charting service that once described itself as the “YouTube for interactive charts”, has now picked up $3.1 million in funding to try to do precisely that: make its platform something used by the public at large.
The Series A round comes from a group of private equity investors that include German super-angels Regehr Capital Management Group; Saeed Amidi, founder and CEO of Plug N Play; and Lorenz Graef, founder and former CEO of Globalpark.
This brings total investment in the company to $4.5 million to date.
The service up to now has mainly developed as an enterprise product, a business that the company is continuing to drive with a recently-launched premium, paid platform. Customers have ranged from bloggers to bigger analyst firms and even a few big brands to build dynamic charts that they post on the web. The list of those users includes Coca Cola, YouGov, Focus Online, comScore and IDC.
iCharts says that the latter two, comScore and IDC, are now also starting to embed iChart graphics into their press releases to further more of those B2B uses (example here).
So very useful, but perhaps not very viewed — or not, at least, anywhere close to YouTube proportions: total chart views for last year, the company says, were nearly nine million. That represents growth of 47.9 percent over the year, the company notes.
Will the new funding bring new partnerships and even new products to take those numbers higher? Is there really a mass-market appetite for more charts — and the chance to make more charts?
Sometimes graphics are the best way to tell a story, and for as long as it remains a pain to make those graphics yourself, iCharts seems like it has an opening, either as a standalone product or part of one of the many services that are linking up consumers with more of the tools that were once the preserve of high-paying business customers (think Google or many others here).